A Canadian Muslim who lives in Minnesota has been charged with aiding Al Qaeda. This from AP:
A federal indictment unsealed Wednesday charged a Minnesota man with conspiracy to provide material support to the Al Qaeda terrorist network.
Mohammed Abdullah Warsame, 30, a Canadian citizen of Somali descent, was arrested in Minneapolis last month as a material witness in an unspecified terrorism investigation. On Tuesday, a grand jury in Minneapolis indicted him.
The indictment was unsealed Wednesday following Warsame’s appearance in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York, where he had been transported in December. Warsame was held without bond there, pending his return to Minneapolis.
The indictment alleges that from March 2000 through the date of his arrest, Dec. 8, Warsame conspired to provide material support and resources for Al Qaeda. No further details of the alleged conspiracy were contained in the information released Wednesday.
“The indictment of Warsame demonstrates this nation’s iron resolve to detect, disrupt and dismantle the networks of terror,” said Attorney General John Ashcroft in a prepared statement. “The charge against Warsame is a grim reminder that Al Qaeda, aided by agents and cells in this country, continues its shadowy efforts to destroy the lives and freedoms of the people in the United States.”
New York attorney Sam Tokin represented Warsame at his court hearing Wednesday. He said Warsame did not enter a plea at the brief hearing, and will be arraigned later in Minneapolis. Tokin declined to detail the allegations against Warsame.
News reports have linked Warsame to terror suspect Zacarias Moussaoui, who was also arrested in Minnesota and now awaits trial in Virginia on federal conspiracy charges. Federal officials have refused to address those reports, and their statement to the news media Wednesday did not mention Moussaoui.
Moussaoui was arrested while learning to fly a Boeing 747 jet at an Eagan flight simulator school two years ago and is the subject of the only U.S. prosecution related to the Sept. 11 attacks. Warsame’s wife, Fartun Farah, has said she doesn’t know whether her husband knows Moussaoui.
Warsame was a student at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. His arrest and the secrecy have been a subject of concern in the local Somali community, which numbers an estimated 15,000 to 20,000 and is believed to be the largest in the United States.
Tom Heffelfinger, U.S. Attorney for Minnesota, said in a statement that the indictment shows that everyone in the United States even in “Minnesota and the rest of the nation’s great heartland are subject to the threat of terrorist activity.”