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Tag: al-Qaida

4 Men with Ohio Ties Accused of Collecting Money to Help Now-Dead Al Qaida Leader

Anwar al-Awlaki

Anwar al-Awlaki

By Steve Neavling

Four men with ties to Ohio were collecting money and other assistance to send to an al Qaida leader who was later killed in a drone strike, the Associated Press reports. 

The Justice Department said two pairs of brothers planned to send money that would be used to attack U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

On a trip to Yemen in 2009, one of the suspects even gave $22,000 to an associate of Anwar al-Awlaki, the Al Qaida leader.

In 2o11, a U.S. drone killed Al-Awlaki, who was accused of planning and launching several attacks against American interests

According to the AP, the indictments identify the suspects as:

— Yahya Farooq Mohammad, 37, an Indian citizen who was at Ohio State from 2002-04. He has lived in the United Arab Emirates since 2004. He also was charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

— Ibrahim Zubair Mohammad, 36, an Indian citizen who was at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign from 2001-05. He has lived in Toledo since 2006. He also was charged with conspiracy to commit bank fraud.

— Asif Ahmed Salim, 35, a U.S. citizen who was at Ohio State from 2000-05. He lived in Overland Park, Kansas, from 2007-2011 before moving to the United Arab Emirates.

— Sultane Room Salim, 40, a U.S. citizen who lived in the Chicago-area from 2006-12 until moving to the Columbus area.

Bin Laden Aide Denied Request to Question FBI, Witnesses at Resentencing

Steve Neavling 

Osama bin Laden’s former secretary won’t be able to question FBI agents and witnesses during his resentencing, Bloomberg reports.

U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan on Tuesday denied the request of Wadih el-Hage, who is serving a life sentence for participating in a plot to kill Americans.

“My past experience with my lawyers is that they delay my requests to the last minute, then use that as an excuse not to do it, therefore I am writing this letter,” he told the judge.

The judge said el-Hage can’t handle case alone as long as he has an attorney.

“Given the aggressive representation of this defendant by his able counsel, this court declines to permit hybrid representation,” Kaplan wrote.


Jury Convicts New York Man of Trying to Seek Terrorism Training Abroad

Steve Neavling 

A jury Monday convicted a New York man of lying to the FBI about plans to train with terrorists like the Taliban or al-Qaida, the Associated Press reports.

Abdel Hameed Shehadeh now faces up to 21 years in prison when sentenced.

Shehadeh’s friends testified that he spoke of wanting to die while waging holy war against the U.S. abroad .

He first caught the suspicion of the FBI in 2009 when he purchased a one-way ticket to Islambad, the AP reported.

Justice Department: U.S. Permitted to Kill American Citizens Involved with al-Qaida

Steve Neavling

A confidential memo obtained by NBC News reveals that the Justice Department has found no legal reason to bar the U.S. government from killing American citizens who are involved with al-Qaida or its alliances.

The 16-page memo, reported by NBC News, paints a clearer picture of President Obama’s legal reasoning for increasing the use of drone strikes in other countries.

The memo indicates the federal government can order the killing of an American citizen even if there’s no evidence the citizen was engaged in an active attack agains the U.S, NBC News reported.

“The condition that an operational leader present an ‘imminent’ threat of violent attack against the United States does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons and interests will take place in the immediate future,” the memo states.


Justice Department Opts Not to Appeal 37-Year-Sentence of Al-Qaida-Trained Terrorist

Steve Neavling 

An al-Qaida-trained terrorist convicted of a plot to bomb Los Angeles International Airport at the millennium will retain his 37-year sentence after the Justice Department opted not to appeal the punishment, the Associated Press reports.

The Justice Department had called for the death penalty, but said it’s satisfied because Ahmed Ressam will be behind bars until he’s older than 60.

After serving his sentence, Ressam, who was caught driving into the U.S. from Canada with a trunk full of explosives, will be deported to Algeria, where he faces additional charges, the AP reported.

Ressam’s lawyers also chose not to appeal.



Minnesota Man Accused of Helping Terrorist Group to Stand Trial Today

Steve Neavling

Depending on whom you ask, Mahamud Said Omar is either a well-connected member of an Islamist terror group or he’s mental ill and incapable of being an integral part of a terrorism recruiting network, the Star Tribune reports.

Today the 46-year-old Somali man who immigrated to Minnesota in 1993 is expected to stand trail for assisting terrorists in Somolia.

Omar is accused of being an entrenched member of Al-Shabab, an Islamist insurgency group with suspected ties with Al-Qaida.

Omar will be the third Minnesota man to stand trial on aiding terrorists in Somalia.

Chicago Man Faces Prison Time on Terrorism Charge

Steve Neavling

A Chicago man accused of traveling to Somalia to become a suicide bomber for a terrorist group tied to al-Qaida faces nearly 10 year in prison, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Shaker Masri, 28, agreed to plead guilty to one count of attempting to provide material support to a terrorist organization in exchange for serving no more than nine years and 10 months in prison.

Masri’s plans were recorded by an FBI informant who befriended Masri, a native U.S. citizen, and pledged to help him travel, according to the Tribune.

The pair discussed traveling to East Africa and obtaining weapons and supplies.

Masri is of Syrian descent, the Tribune reported.


Rules on Terror Suspects Change for FBI

By Danny Fenster

New rules have been outlined by the Obama administration regarding when the FBI, as opposed to the military, can retain custody of al-Qaida terrorism suspects who are not U.S. citizens but are arrested by federal law enforcement agents, reports the Associated Press.

The new rules from the White House came about from a December agreement amongst congressmen and the Obama administration seeking broader military control and reduced civilian court rule for terrorism suspects, according to the AP.

Non-US citizen members of al-Qaida involved in planning or attempting to target US or coalition forces require military custody, according to the new law. The president maintains the ability to waive that provision, however.

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