SYDNEY, Australia: A former Guantanamo Bay inmate who was released by the U.S. military without charge last year was questioned by police in Sydney after witnessing a fatal double shooting, his lawyer said Thursday.
New South Wales state police said Egyptian-born Mamdouh Habib, 50, was not a suspect in the killings and he was not placed under arrest, according to the Australian Associated Press.
The former terror suspect was questioned by police late Wednesday after he saw two young men gunned down in the western suburb of Granville, lawyer Peter Erman said. Habib saw a group of youths in front of him and then he heard shots being fired, Erman said.
He does not know where the shots came from; nor who fired the gun, and he doesn t know any of the individuals involved, Erman said. He assisted the police as best he could with limited knowledge of what happened because he happened to be at the scene at the time.
New South Wales state police said they arrested two people at the scene who disobeyed directions, but that they were released without charge later the same night, AAP reported.
Raul Bassi, a friend of Habib, told the AAP that police questioned the former Guantanamo detainee for several hours on Wednesday night.
He told me that he was almost all night with police, Bassi said. He feels a bit harassed.
Habib was released without charge from the U.S. military base in Cuba in January 2005, more than three years after he was arrested in Pakistan in October 2001 and held on suspicion of being a terrorist.
Last August, Habib was stabbed in the stomach while walking with his wife near his Sydney home. He was not seriously injured and said he believed the three men who attacked him only wanted to menace him. AP