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Kansas City Used Car Dealer Pleads Guilty to Supporting al Qaeda and Sending $$$

kansas cityBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Smack in the middle of the heartland, in an area better known for its steak and barbecue than its links to al Qaeda, comes a little bit of news.

Khalid Ouazzani, 32, a used car and parts dealer from Kansas City, Mo., pleaded guilty Wednesday to providing material support to al Qaeda by sending it $23,000 and swearing an oath of allegiance to the group, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced. He also pleaded guilty to bank fraud and money laundering.

“Citizens in the heartland should be alert to suspicious activity and never hesitate to report their concerns to law enforcement,” Brian Truchon, special agent in charge of the Kansas City FBI, said in a statement.

Ouazzani, a native of Morrocco and a natural U.S. citizen, admitted that between August 2007 and February 2010 he was out to help al Qaeda in different ways including talking to people about plans for them to fight in Afghanistan, Somali and Iraq, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Ouazzani also pleaded guilty to money laundering and bank fraud by stealing about $175,000 from Union Bank by using false and fraudulent financial information.

Kansas City U.S. Attorney Beth Phillips said in a statement: “Federal prosecutions not only result in long prison sentences, but yield valuable intelligence that can be used in the fight against al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations.”

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