Tripoli, Feb 28 (ANI): A former Libyan official has claimed that the Lockerbie bomber, Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi, had blackmailed Colonel Muammar Gaddafi and threatened to reveal that he had ordered the devastating attack on Pan Am Flight 103 unless the dictator ensured his release from the Scottish prison.
Al-Megrahi had allegedly threatened "revenge" on Gaddafi unless he was returned home to his family, prompting the dictator to spend 50,000 pounds a month on lobbying and legal fees in a campaign to secure the terrorist's release, The Telegraph reports.
Libya's former justice minister, Mustapha Abdel-Jalil, has made the latest revelations amid a chaotic situation in Libya, wherein the pro-Gaddafi forces are continuing their brutal crackdown on protesters.
Jalil said the convicted terrorist had also repeatedly threatened to "spill the beans" over the role of senior regime members in the attack unless he was rescued.
The paper quoted the former justice minister, who resigned last week, as saying that the bomber had warned Gaddafi saying: "If you do not rescue me I will reveal everything."
"They were dedicated to ensuring that Megrahi should return to Libya even if it cost them every penny they had. It was costing them 50,000 a month being paid to him, his legal team and family members for visitations and living expenses," Abdel Jalil said.
Jalil's claims were echoed by the former terror chief Atef Abu Bakr, claiming that Gaddafi had ordered Megrahi to help plan the attack, the paper said.
Megrahi is the only man ever to have been convicted over the bombing, which killed all 259 passengers and crew on board the New York-bound Boeing 747 and 11 people in Lockerbie in December 1998. (ANI)