SACRAMENTO “” A man facing federal terrorism charges “had a jihadi heart and a jihadi mind” long before he confessed to attending an al-Qaida training camp in Pakistan, a prosecutor told jurors Wednesday.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Tice-Raskin used his closing argument to counter testimony that FBI agents and a government informant may have tricked 23-year-old Hamid Hayat into making incriminating statements.
Hayat and his father, both from Lodi, are on trial in U.S. District Court for lying about the son’s suspected attendance at the terror training camp in 2003.
The prosecutor said Hayat freely revealed his intentions to the government informant, who was recruited by the FBI shortly after the September 2001 terror attacks and arrived in Lodi later that year. The informant befriended the Hayat family and secretly recorded hundreds of hours of conversations, evidence that became key to the government’s case.
Hamid Hayat “repeatedly professed support for violent jihad,” Tice-Raskin told jurors. “He tells you in his own words, captured forever on tapes, that he was going to jihad, that he was going to training.”
He said the conversations reveal “the real Hamid Hayat” and show that he “believes heart and soul in violent jihad. Hamid Hayat had a jihadi heart and he had a jihadi mind,” Tice-Raskin said.