London oil executive linked to 9/11 hijackers

February 18th, 2012 - 11:20 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Feb 18 (IANS) A Saudi man accused of associating with 9/11 hijackers and who disappeared from his home in the US a few weeks before the attacks in 2001, is in London working for his country’s state oil company, The Telegraph reported Saturday.

Abdulaziz al-Hijji and his wife Anoud left three cars at their luxurious home in a gated community in Sarasota, Florida, in August 2001 - one of them knew about the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. They flew to Saudi Arabia.

The refrigerator was full of food; furniture and clothing were left behind; and the swimming pool water was still circulating, according to the newspaper.

Security records of cars passing through a checkpoint at the Prestancia gated community indicated that al-Hijji’s home, 4224 Escondito Circle, had been visited a number of times by Mohamed Atta, the leader of the 19-strong hijack team, who piloted American Airlines Flight 11 into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in 2001.

The logs also indicated that Marwan Al-Shehhi, who crashed United Airlines Flight 175 into the South Tower, and Ziad Jarrah, who was at the controls of United Airlines Flight 93 when it crashed in a field in Pennsylvania, had visited the house.

A decade after the world’s worst terrorist attack, which claimed the lives of 3,000 people, al-Hijji is resident in London, working for the European subsidiary of Saudi Aramco, Saudi Arabia’s state oil company.

Described as a career counsellor, he is based in the offices of Aramco Overseas Company UK Limited and lives in an expensive flat in central London.

In email correspondence with the Telegraph, al-Hijji denied any involvement in the plot, writing: “I have neither relation nor association with any of those bad people/criminals and the awful crime they did. 9/11 is a crime against the USA and all humankind and I’m very saddened and oppressed by these false allegations.

“I love the USA. My kids were born there, I went to college and university there, I spent a good portion of my life there and I love it.”

Al-Hijji, 38, moved with his family to Britain in 2003, setting up home in a rented four-bedroom detached house in the Southampton suburb of Totton. His stay there appears to have been uneventful.

The al-Hijjis’ abrupt departure from Sarasota aroused the suspicion of their next-door neighbour, Patrick Gallagher. He emailed the FBI within two days of 9/11 to report the disappearance of the couple and their young children.

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