Jerusalem, Sep. 4 (ANI): A senior FBI agent has claimed that Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi must have personally okayed the 1988 Lockerbie bombing that killed 270 people.
Richard Marquise, an FBI veteran who led the US task force probing the December 1988 blast, said it is unthinkable that such a major terrorist attack in a regime like Libya could have been authorized without Gaddafi's approval.
"If you were a senior minister, would you do this without telling the boss? I doubt it. I have to think [Gaddafi] knew something was going to happen, something that the US would be pissed about, and he said OK," The Jerusalem Post quoted Marquise, as saying.
He said investigators had tried to pursue the chain of responsibility up through the Libyan hierarchy, but had been unable to muster the necessary evidence.
"We couldn't make the connections... A lot of names came up... We had names of people in the Libyan hierarchy, buying radios, making inquiries about putting bombs in radios," Marquise said.
The bomb that destroyed Pan Am 103 was hidden in a Toshiba radio cassette player.
"But there was no real overt act [that could serve as the basis for an indictment. It would have been nice to indict the entire Libyan regime, but our system wouldn't allow for it. It would have been a real struggle to show Gaddafi and others in the chain," he said.
Marquise said he was also convinced that Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, the former Libyan intelligence officer who is the only man ever convicted in the attack, was no "rogue" agent.
"It had been hoped that Megrahi would give us the whole story, and go up the chain. That didn't happen. And Megrahi never talked. He did everything for his leader," he said. (ANI)