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Alleged Bombing Masterminds Deny Involvement in Madrid Blasts

Two alleged masterminds of the 2004 Madrid train bombings have denied involvement in the deadly attacks.

Youssef Belhadj and Hassan el-Haski took the stand Friday during the trial in the outskirts of Madrid. The Moroccan men denied having any terror links.

Prosecutors believe Belhadj is the person in a video found after the attacks claiming responsibility for the bombings in the name of al-Qaida.

Also taking the stand Friday was a man alleged to have placed a bomb, Jamal Zougam. He denied any involvement and said he was sleeping at the time of the attacks.

Zougam ran a shop where officials say phone cards in the mobile phones used to set off the bombs were purchased.

Thursday, at the opening of the trial, alleged mastermind Rabei Osman Sayed Ahmed condemned the attacks and denied involvement.

The attacks on packed commuter trains on March 11, 2004, killed 191 people and wounded more than 1,800.

The men face prison sentences of nearly 40,000 years. Under Spanish law, the maximum sentence they can receive is 40 years.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.