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Thai court jails Swedish man for possession of materials used to make bombs

A Thai court has jailed Atris Hussein, 49, a Swedish man with Lebanese origin, his crime was being in possession of materials that could be used to make explosive devices. The man received a sentence of two years and eight months.

His arrest came in January 2012 at Bangkok Airport after they received alerts from the USA and Israel that he could pose a possible threat.

Hussein has maintained his innocence led police to a building in which fertilizer and ammonium nitrate, that requires a permit in Thailand was being stored.

Although the accused hid his illegal bomb making materials that could pose a risk to national security, he was willing to cooperate with authorities and on the strength of that his sentence was reduced from four years to two years and eight months.

However his lawyer said that they would be looking for further reductions in the term as his client has already spent one year and eight months in jail.

Thai authorities had accused him to having links to Hezbollah, a Lebanon-based Shia Islamist movement backed mainly by Syria and Iran that the US considers to be a terrorist organisation, but Hussein denied any militant links throughout the trial.

He says he is a businessman involved in exporting goods from Thailand to other countries, including Lebanon.

Officials say his case was not related to failed bombings in Bangkok on 14 February 2012 involving Iranian suspects.

Two men were jailed on charges that included illegal possession of explosives, after a blast damaged the house they were staying at.

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