Paris attack suspect Abdeslam extradited from Belgium to France

Salah Abdeslam

The French prosecutor's office said Abdeslam arrived in France at 9:05 am (0705 GMT). French broadcaster BFM-TV reported that he arrived at the Palais de Justice in Paris by late morning.

Abdeslam, who for months was the most-wanted man in Europe after he escaped arrest after the Paris attacks, was detained by Belgian authorities on March 18.

His brother, Brahim, was one of the men who blew themselves up on November 13 in a series of orchestrated attacks against cafes, a football stadium and a concert hall, one of the most deadly attacks France has seen on its soil in the post-war era.

According to a French state prosecutor, Salah Abdeslam had intended to blow himself up at the Stade de France football stadium, but then backed out.

The 26-year-old Frenchman was arrested in Brussels four days before deadly terrorist attacks on the Belgian capital's international airport and Maelbeek underground railway station.

Speaking to broadcasters on Wednesday morning, Salah Abdeslam's French lawyer, Frank Berton, said he had visited his client in detention in Belgium. Berton told i-Tele that he found Abdeslam to be a "shattered" young man.

Berton said Abdeslam told him that "he wants to participate in the judicial process. He has things to say. He wants to explain his path to radicalization; he wants to explain his participation in the act."

French Justice Minister Jean-Jacques Urvoas said preparations are under way to hold Abdeslam in isolation and under surveillance in a high-security detention centre near the French capital.

Belgian prosecutors agreed last month to the French extradition request for Abdeslam, but decided to question him first in relation to a shoot-out with police in a Brussels neighbourhood days before his arrest. He has been charged with attempted murder in relation to that incident.

Abdeslam has also been linked to several of the perpetrators in the Brussels terrorist attacks, but has not been charged in relation to those events.

Last update: Wed, 27/04/2016 - 15:57

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