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Police linked to 'falsified' Madrid bombings document appear in Spanish court

Police linked to 'falsified' Madrid bombings document appear in Spanish court

Two police experts believed linked to an allegedly forged document about Madrid's train bombings appeared in court Friday to give evidence.
National Court anti-terrorism specialist judge Baltasar Garzon has said three police experts _ Isabel Lopez Cidad, Manuel Escribano and Pedro Manrique _ had unlawfully altered potential evidence linked to the March 2004 train bombings in Madrid which killed 191 people and wounded more than 1,700.
Lopez Cidad and Escribano appeared before District Judge Gemma Gallego on Friday. Manrique is due to give evidence Monday.
The document was an experts' report detailing chemicals that were found in a search of an apartment of a suspect in the bombings. The three suspects allegedly substituted the official search report with an earlier, unofficial draft document.
The genuine report said boric acid was found in the apartment of Hassan al Haski, who was arrested Dec. 18, 2004 in the Canary Islands on suspicion of being linked to the Madrid bombings.
The allegedly falsified document _ dated Mar. 22, 2005 _ includes a mention of a separate, unconnected search on premises used by armed Basque separatist group ETA, in which the same substance was found. It did not say when that search took place.
Police have said the three experts could face charges of forgery for mentioning the two finds in the same document, thus creating a link between the two.
Newspaper El Mundo and the leading conservative opposition Popular Party have led a months-long campaign saying that ETA played a role in the Madrid bombings and accuse the government and the police of a coverup.
The official investigation into the attacks has so far concluded that Islamic militants acted alone in carrying out the bombings. There are 29 suspects indicted in the attacks and a trial is expected next year.
The government of Socialist Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero accuses the opposition of discrediting the professionalism of police and judicial investigators into the terror attacks.


Updated : 2020-12-04 14:00 GMT+08:00