Lebanese affiliated with Hezbollah arrested by Moroccan security forces over fraud, I.D. theft

File photo of Hezbollah flag. :Several countries designated Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed, Lebanon-based Shiite group, as a “terrorist” organization.The designation covers the entirety of the group, both the political and military wings . Australian was the most recent country to designate Hezbollah as a terrorist group.
File photo : EU has been urged by prominent figures to designate both wings of Hezbollah as a terrorist organization

Moroccan authorities said late Thursday they arrested a Lebanese national affiliated with the Hezbollah party over charges of committing fraud and identity theft.

They said the 57-year-old man features on the Interpol list of wanted criminals.

The National Brigade of the Judicial Police (BNPJ), upon intelligence provided by the National Security Directorate, (DGST), arrested the Hezbollah member last Wednesday in Casablanca over charges of fraud, identity theft, and possession of identity documents and passports reported stolen.

The suspect is accused of defrauding money from several victims in Morocco. He also used stolen French and Portuguese passports, fooled his victims claiming he is a manager of foreign companies.

At his residence, the security forces found two stolen French and Portuguese passports, registered as stolen in the database of Interpol, several identity documents, French driving licenses with Portuguese, French, and Italian names as well as an unspecified amount of money in foreign currency and local Dirham.

The investigations are conducted in coordinating with Interpol as well as with the countries concerned to determine the circumstances of the declaration of the theft of the seized passports.

Morocco accuses Iran and its Lebanese Shiite ally, Hezbollah, of training and arming fighters of the Polisario Front, a Western Sahara independence movement.

US officials have long been concerned that central and west African countries could become safe havens for financiers of Hezbollah looking to take advantage of weak financial regulation.

Asharq Al-Awsat