Man Charged in Nairobi Bombing
Sep. 17, 1998
NEW YORK (AP) _ A fugitive from the Comoros islands was charged Thursday with murdering 12 Americans in the bombing of the U.S. embassy in Kenya.
Haroun Fazil, the third suspect charged in the Aug. 7 bombing, helped plan the attack and rented a villa where the bomb was built, U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White said.
Fazil, who has not been arrested, received paramilitary training to use explosives in Afghanistan, the federal complaint said, and took part in the Kenyan cell of al-Qaida, an international terrorist organization allegedly headed by Islamic militant Osama bin Laden.
In a complaint filed last month in U.S. District Court, the government tried to show that bin Laden directed the twin attacks on the embassies in Nairobi and in Tanzania as part of an ongoing, anti-American terrorism campaign. The complaint said al-Qaida sought to change U.S. foreign policy by killing U.S. civilians and military personnel worldwide.
Fazil, from the Comoros islands off east Africa, rented the Nairobi villa from May through August, when a co-conspirator also moved in, according to the complaint.
The unidentified co-conspirator told authorities he believed the bomb used in the Kenyan capital was built at the villa. Fazil also is accused of scoping out the Nairobi embassy in the days before the attack, which killed 247 people _ including the 12 Americans _ and injured thousands. Eleven people were killed in the bombing in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Fazil also met with other members of the Kenyan cell of al-Qaida at the Hilltop Hotel in Nairobi, prosecutors allege.
On the day of the bombing, he allegedly drove a white pickup truck to the U.S. Embassy, followed by the vehicle carrying the bomb, the complaint said.