The Address | Benghazi – Libya
LONDON – A Libyan man arrested after the Manchester Arena terror attack has won “substantial” damages over false newspaper allegations he was an “ISIS sympathizer”, BBC reported.
Alaedeen Sicri was arrested, following the Manchester attack in May 2017, because suicide bomber Salman Abedi called his phone number in the days before the attack, the High Court heard.
Sicri, from West Sussex, was released without charge. His lawyer, Sara Mansoori, told Judge Justice Warby that her client had “nothing whatever to do with the attack and had no connection or affiliation with the bomber or other terrorists”.
On 31 May 2017 the print edition of Brighton-based newspaper The Argus, published by Newsquest, referred to Mr Sicri’s arrest and made “serious allegations about him, suggesting he was an “ISIS supporter”, Mansoori said.
She explained that her client had run an online business assisting individuals in Libya to make purchases from websites such as eBay and Amazon while he trained to be a pilot. She added that Abedi contacted her client because he wanted to transfer money to Libya, but Sicri hung up because he was suspicious of a scam.
Publisher Newsquest admitted the report was “wholly false” and apologized. Newsquest’s lawyer said the publisher would pay a “a substantial sum in compensation and his legal costs” but was not revealed in court.