Ex-convict flees France, nabbed by Swiss in asylum bid
PARIS – An Algerian man who fled house arrest in France following his conviction in a terror-linked case has been arrested in Switzerland while seeking asylum.
A statement from Swiss police on Thursday said Merouane Benhamed was detained a day earlier as he applied for asylum in Vallorbe, a city 47 kilometers (28 miles) from Lausanne.
French authorities had been trying to locate the 44-year-old Benhamed since he slipped away from house arrest two weeks ago.
France uses house arrest to monitor foreign ex-convicts who've served their terms and are no longer wanted in France, but cannot be deported.
Benhamed was among 25 people convicted in 2006 for plotting an attack in support of Islamist fighters in Chechnya. He was freed from prison in 2011, but since then was under house arrest.