Reda Kriket, the man suspected of planning a terror attack in France has been living for three years in Brussels in the commune (borough) of Ixelles. The information was revealed by the Journal du Dimanche.
Reda Kriket, 34, French, was arrested in the Paris suburb of Argenteuil on Thursday and is suspected of belonging to a militant network planning an attack in France. He is directly linked to the Belgian Abdelhamid Abaaoud. He was found as part of investigations into the Paris attacks. Extremely violent, he had been sentenced in absentia to 10 years in Belgium last July for recruiting Islamist fighters for Syria in the Syrian Connection case.
In the same case, Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the suspected ringleader of the Paris attacks later killed by French police, got 20 years, also in absentia, while Khalid Zerkani, a Moroccan recruiter of jihadis in Europe, was jailed for 12 years.
According to a report in Le Point magazine, Zerkani was a mentor to the two other men and to Najim Laachraoui, one of the Brussels airport bombers who is also suspected of having made explosive belts for the Paris attacks.
Meanwhile, Dutch police arrested a 32-year-old Frenchman in the port city of Rotterdam on Sunday at the request of French authorities who suspect him of “involvement in planning a terror attack,” prosecutors said.
Residents were evacuated from homes near addresses on two streets that were raided Sunday by anti-terror police, who also took three other men into custody.
French officials requested the arrest Friday after the suspect emerged during an investigation, according to a statement from the Dutch national prosecutor’s office.
The arrest was part of a broad intelligence operation to thwart a plot to stage an attack in France, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said in a statement.
The suspect is believed linked to a Frenchman arrested in the Paris region last week, Reda Kriket, the Paris prosecutor’s office said. The interior ministry said another person was detained in Belgium on Saturday in the case.
An official with the Paris prosecutor’s office said there is no sign of a link at this stage between Kriket’s purported plot and a network behind the attacks in Brussels and Paris in recent months.
The Paris official and Dutch prosecutors’ spokesman Wim de Bruin declined to give more details about the alleged plot.
The suspect, whose identity was not released, is expected to be extradited to France soon.
Three other men were detained in Sunday’s raids; two with Algerian backgrounds and a third man whose identity could not immediately be established.
De Bruin said the three were being held in relation to a Dutch investigation, but he gave no further details.
The raids came with Europe on high alert following last week’s deadly suicide bombings in Brussels.