U.S. officials say the FBI has arrested
an American lawyer in connection with the deadly March 11 terrorist train bombings
in Madrid, Spain.
Officials said that Brandon Mayfield was taken into custody Thursday in Portland,
in the western U.S. state of Oregon after Spanish authorities reported finding
what may be his fingerprints on a bag containing bomb-related materials. Agents
also searched his home.
The 37-year-old man apparently was detained under a material witness warrant,
which allows authorities to hold him indefinitely without charges while they
carry out their investigation.
Law enforcement officials have declined to comment on the matter.
Mr. Mayfield, a former U.S. Army officer, converted to Islam in 1989. Authorities
say he has been under around-the-clock FBI surveillance for some time.
The March 11 bombings of four Madrid commuter trains killed 191 people and
wounded 2,000 others.
Spanish authorities suspect Moroccan Islamic extremists with possible connections
to al-Qaida carried out the blasts in response to Spanish involvement in the
war in Iraq.
Eighteen suspects are in Spanish jails in connection with the attacks.
Mr. Mayfield represented one of the chief defendants in the so-called "Portland
Seven" terror case in a custody battle. Six members of a Portland terrorist
cell pleaded guilty in October of plotting to fight with the Taliban against
the United States in Afghanistan.