New al-Qaida Warnings Cited Overseas
Wed Jun 12, 4:49 PM ET
By ANGELA DOLAND, Associated Press Writer
PARIS (AP) - French anti-terrorist police rounded up five people on Wednesday who are suspected of providing assistance to alleged shoe bomber Richard C. Reid in Paris, the second such sweep in two months.
The arrests came as officials in Germany said they had received intelligence of a possible al-Qaida plot to shoot down civilian airliners. Separately, Indian officials claimed they had evidence of an imminent al-Qaida attack on financial institutions in Bombay. And Britain said it was forming a 6,000-strong reaction unit in case of a Sept. 11-style attack.
Two Pakistanis and three North Africans with alleged sympathies to radical Islam were taken into custody at dawn in the Paris suburbs, police officials said on condition of anonymity. Several may also have had French citizenship
They were being questioned at Paris police headquarters. During the sweeps in Evry and a notoriously rough neighborhood of Mantes-la-Jolie, authorities found radical pamphlets and three guns, the officials said.
Reid, a 28-year-old British citizen, is being held in the United States, and French police have been conducting their own investigation to track his activities in France before he allegedly tried to ignite his explosive-stuffed sneakers on a Paris-Miami flight in December.
Le Monde newspaper reported the suspects detained Wednesday were identified by people arrested in a previous roundup. The new suspects had allegedly been seen with Reid eight months to a year before he boarded the flight.
Though police believe Reid had logistical support in the French capital, they have so far been unable to track down solid evidence, Le Monde reported.
I didn't think the French had the balls to do anything.