A Philippine court was set to issue verdicts Friday against an Indonesian and two Filipino terror suspects accused of bombing a Manila bus in February, killing four people, officials said. If convicted, the suspects could face a death sentence.
The Indonesian, who goes by one name, Rohmat, is a confessed member of the regional terror group Jemaah Islamiyah who was captured in March in the southern Philippines, where authorities say several dozen Indonesian militants have been training local guerrillas in bomb-making and plotting attacks.
Rohmat has pleaded not guilty, while three Filipino co-accused, members of the Abu Sayyaf extremist group, have admitted to multiple murder charges. Rohmat said during his arraignment in April that he had nothing to do with the Feb. 14 bombing because he was in the Philippines' southern Mindanao region at the time. But he claimed he provided training in weapons, tactics and map reading to the three other suspects, Gamal Baharan, Abu Khalil Trinidad and Gappal Bannah.
Bannah later became a state witness.
Prosecutors also charged Abu Sayyaf chiefs Khadaffy Janjalani and Abu Sulaiman for the bus bombing. The two leaders remain at large.
During the five-month trial, one of the witnesses, a bus conductor, identified Baharan and Trinidad as passengers who left the bus in a hurry shortly before the blast, state prosecutor Emmanuel Velasco said.
The al-Qaida-linked Abu Sayyaf claimed responsibility for the bombing in retaliation for a military offensive against militants, reports the AP. I.L.