A Belgian court on Monday sentenced Paris attacks suspect Salah Abdeslam to 20 years in prison for trying to kill police officers during a shootout in Brussels in 2016, Reuters reported.
Abdeslam is the only surviving suspect in the November 2015 Paris attack case. Terrorists had killed 130 people in the attack. On Monday, both Abdeslam and his accomplice Sofien Ayari were sentenced for their role in the 2016 shooting, which left four officers injured. Both men were not in court when the judges read out their verdict, The Guardian reported.
Abdeslam has been in a jail in France and will face trial there for the Paris attacks in 2020. During the trial in Brussels, he refused to answer questions from the judge, and even refused to attend the hearings, BBC reported.
“There can be no doubt,” the judge, Marie France Keutgen, said about the men’s involvement with extremists, according to the BBC report. “Their intention is clear from the nature of the weapons they used, the number of bullets they fired and the nature of the police officers’ wounds,” the judge said. “Only the officers’ professional response prevented it being worse.”
Abdeslam fled Paris soon after the attacks and went into hiding in a flat in Brussels. In March 2016, the police raided the flat and came under fire from inside.