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Stuttgart, Germany) A two-year-trial of three Iraqis has concluded with each being sent to prison for attempting to assassinate Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi in 2004.

High Court Presiding Judge Christine Rebsam-Bender sentenced Ata Abdoulaziz Rashid, the 34-year-old ringleader, to 10 years in prison. Mazen Ali Hussein, 27, received seven and one-half years and 33-year-old Rafik Mohamad Yousef got eight years.
Rashid, who was arrested in Stuttgart, is believed to have been the ringleader and to have been informed of other attacks planned by Ansar al-Islam.

The court found that he collected funds and recruited potential suicide bombers for the group, which has claimed responsibility for a series of bloody attacks on US troops and aid workers.

Authorities found that Hussein, 27, was a close accomplice of Rashid's who also drummed up funding for Ansar al-Islam in Germany.

The court estimated Rashid had raised about €45,000, some €20,000 of which was funnelled to Ansar al-Islam in Iraq to fund attacks and pay stipends to families of suicide bombers.

Hussein told the court in September 2006 that the intention was not to kill the Iraqi leader but to "teach him a lesson". He conceded having made telephone calls which contained coded messages about the plot.

Yousef is believed to have approached Hussein just five days before Allawi's arrival in Germany seeking support for his idea to kill the prime minister.​
The assassination plotters were prosecuted under a new law allowing Germany to jail members of foreign terror organizations. Defense attorneys vowed to appeal the verdicts.

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