BERLIN: A German-Afghan man whose confessions helped spark a travel alert in Europe in 2010 over potential attacks was jailed for six years on Tuesday for belonging to Al-Qaeda.
The higher regional court in the western city of Koblenz also found Ahmed Wali Siddiqui, 37, guilty of being a member of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU).
"The defendant has been sentenced to six years' imprisonment because of membership in two terror organisations overseas. It concerns the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and Al-Qaeda," court spokesman Tobias Eisert said.
"The verdict is based mainly on confessions by the defendant," he said.
Western powers say the IMU aims to establish Sharia, or Islamic law, in central Asia and is waging a guerrilla campaign against security forces in Pakistan and NATO troops in Afghanistan.
A court statement said the defendant, who has German and Afghan citizenship, admitted travelling to Waziristan on Pakistan's border with Afghanistan in March 2009 to join the IMU and began weapons training.
Later that year, the court said he joined Al-Qaeda and came into contact with a high-ranking official in May 2010 who was planning to build up a network of operatives in Europe.
Siddiqui was to become part of this network in Germany, the written statement said.
US forces detained Siddiqui in July 2010 in Kabul and held him at Bagram air base outside the Afghan capital.
Information he provided during interrogation reportedly prompted US authorities to warn in October 2010 of an Al-Qaeda plot to carry out attacks in Britain, France and Germany.
All three countries subsequently beefed up security.
German authorities were allowed to question Siddiqui at Bagram on several occasions and secured his extradition last April.
Prosecutors had called for a term of seven and a half years' jail, while the defence said four years would be more appropriate. (AFP)