Paris attacks: Suspect Salah Abdeslam was fined for drugs possession in Netherlands

Salah Abdeslam was carrying soft drugs.
Salah Abdeslam was carrying soft drugs.PHOTO: AFP

AMSTERDAM (REUTERS) - Paris attack suspect Salah Abdeslam was fined for drug possession in the Netherlands in February, Dutch police said on Wednesday.

Abdeslam, his brother, and a third man, were stopped near the Belgian border during a routine check, a Dutch police statement said. He was fined €70 (S$100) for possession of "soft drugs", meaning either cannabis or hashish, while driving back to Belgium.

 

Abdeslam, 26, a Belgian-based Frenchman, is sought by French police, who say he played a central role in planning and executing the attacks in Paris on Nov 13 that killed 129 people.

Dutch police said there was no warrant out for his arrest at the time of the drugs offence in February.

They added there was currently no known direct link between the suspects in the Paris attacks and radical networks in the Netherlands.

Abdeslam had run a bar in the Brussels neighbourhood of Molenbeek with his brother Brahim - who blew himself up in the Paris attacks - but it was closed down after police found young men dealing drugs and smoking dope over the summer.