BONN (Apr. 19)
Abbas Hamadei was sentenced in Duesseldorf Tuesday to 13 years in prison for kidnapping two West German businessmen in Beirut.
One of them, Rudolf Cordes, is still being held hostage in Lebanon. The other, Alfred Schmidt, was freed three months ago.
Federal prosecutor Kurt Redman expressed satisfaction with the verdict, but refused to say how it might affect Cordes, who reportedly has suffered a severe nervous collapse in a Palestinian refugee camp, where he is confined.
He and Schmidt were abducted in January 1987. The Duesseldorf court ruled that Hamadei, 29, engineered the kidnapping to force the Bonn government to release his brother, Ahmed Hamadei, accused of air piracy and murder.
The younger Hamadei was arrested in Frankfurt 15 months ago for the June 1985 hijacking of a TWA airliner and the killing of one of its passengers, a U.S. Navy diver. The Bonn authorities rejected an American request for extradition. A controversy was raised by their decision to try Ahmed Hamadei in juvenile court, which can impose a maximum sentence of 10 years.
The accused was reportedly under 21 at the time of the hijacking, a minor in the eyes of the law. His actual age is the subject of an investigation.