More American Jihad. “Teacher lent support to Pakistani terror group : Prosecutors,” from AP, with thanks to Sr. Soph:
ALEXANDRIA, Virginia – A third-grade teacher at a Muslim school in Maryland traveled to Pakistan shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks, trained with a terrorist organization there and later served as chauffeur for one of that group’s leaders during his US travels, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors and defense lawyers made their closing arguments Monday in the trial of Ali Asad Chandia, 29, who is charged with providing material support to Lashkar-e-Taiba, an organization that supports Muslim control of the Kashmir territory on the India-Pakistan border. The US government declared Lashkar a terrorist organization in December 2001.
Prosecutors have said that Lashkar served as a potential gateway for Americans and others who wanted to join the Taleban in neighboring Afghanistan in its fight against US troops in late 2001.
The charges against Chandia stem from a government investigation of what prosecutors called a “Virginia jihad network,” a group of young Muslim men who used paintball games in 2000 and 2001 as paramilitary training for holy war around the globe. Ten people have been convicted in that investigation, including the group’s spiritual leader, Ali al-Timimi, who was sentenced to life in prison for soliciting treason and urging group members to fight US troops in Afghanistan.
Prosecutors do not allege that Chandia intended to take up arms against US troops, but they do say he received jihad training at a Lashkar camp in late 2001. Then, after returning to the US in 2002, they say he helped Lashkar by assisting one of its officers, Mohammed Ajmal Khan, in his US travels.