The trial of Mikael Davud, Shawan Sadek Saeed Bujak and David Jakobsen, which began yesterday, is being seen as a key test of Norway’s anti-terror laws.
The men had been under surveillance for more than a year when authorities moved to arrest them in July 2010.
Norwegian investigators, who worked with their US counterparts, say the accused were building a bomb in a basement laboratory – a plot linked to the same al-Qaeda planners behind 2009 schemes to blow up New York’s subway and a shopping centre in Manchester.
The men deny the terror charges. Prosecutors must prove they worked together in a conspiracy, because a single individual plotting an attack is not covered by Norway’s anti-terror laws.