Mali bomb trial could bring answers for Wearside victim’s family

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AN INDONESIAN militant is to stand trial, accused of playing a critical role in the Bali bombing that killed two Wearsiders.

Ian Findley and Clive Walton were among more than 200 people killed in a blast which ripped through Bali’s Sari Club and nearby Paddy’s Bar, on October 12, 2002.

Mr Findley, 55, from West Pelton, near Chester-le-Street, was celebrating the last night of his holiday with two friends when the tragedy occurred, while 34-year-old Mr Walton, the son of Sunderland councillors Jack and Lilian, was in the Far East to compete in a local rugby tournament.

Umar Patek, the man alleged to have made the explosives used in the bombings, was escorted home under tight security yesterday, more than six months after he was captured in north west Pakistan.

Patek had a $1million bounty on his head when authorities caught up with him in January in Abbottabad, the same town where Osama bin Laden was killed in a U.S. commando attack four months later.

No trial date has been announced.

Indonesian officials say Patek has confessed to playing a key role in the bombings as well as making the bombs used in a string of Christmas Eve attacks on churches in 2000 that claimed 19 lives.

But because tough anti-terror laws passed after the Bali blasts cannot be applied retroactively, he will likely be charged with illegal possession of explosives.