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Exclusive: Suspects' lawyer criticizes police

Police say they are unaware of any complaints

From CNN's Dan Rivers

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LONDON, England (CNN) -- The lawyer for two of the suspects rounded up in a possible plot to bring down as many as 10 trans-Atlantic flights on Saturday criticized their treatment at the hands of British police.

In an exclusive CNN interview, attorney Mudassar Arani listed a series of complaints, including the allegation that one of her clients had not received food and water for 26 hours.

Police arrested 24 people in connection with the alleged terror plot, although one man was released after it was determined he was an innocent bystander, Rivers said.

Although the names of many of the detainees have been confirmed by the Bank of England, which has frozen their accounts, Arani was unwilling to confirm the identities of her clients, referring to them by letters of the alphabet assigned by police.

Both of the men are from the Walthamstow area of East London. They are 22 and 23 years old.

She complained she was able to meet with her clients for only five minutes on Friday.

The men told her they are being held in cold cells and that requests for blankets were refused.

Arani said she was able to brief the men only on events surrounding their arrests and the legal process.

One of the men alleged that police pushed him and targeted him with racial abuse, the lawyer said.

CNN has been unable to corroborate Arani's allegations. The Metropolitan Police tell CNN they have not been made aware of any official complaint about the detainees' treatment.

Arani said that the men were upset and had been crying.

She said her clients are shocked at what is happening, and were concerned about their families, whom police have moved from their homes into hotels. The men, she said, have not been allowed to call their families, contrary to their rights.

"She had not had any indication from the police as to what was going to happen next," Rivers said.

Police were preparing to move the men, who can be held for up to 28 days without charges being filed, from London's Paddington Green police station to Belmarsh prison, the lawyer said. Belmarsh is a maximum security facility regularly used to hold terrorism suspects.

Rivers said Walthamstow, where most of the men were arrested, is a fairly quiet, middle-class suburb where many Asians and Muslims live. A man who knows Arani's clients said they were polite and have jobs.

U.S. and British sources said one of the men in custody in Pakistan, Rashid Rauf, had a key operational role in the alleged plot. Rauf appeared in a local court before a magistrate Saturday, according to Pakistan's Interior Ministry.

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