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Thu June 19, 2014
British Terror Suspects Imprisoned in Connecticut to Be Sentenced in July
Federal prosecutors filed court papers this week in advance of the July sentencing of two British citizens imprisoned in Connecticut for supporting terrorism.
Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan pleaded guilty in December to raising funds for terrorists through a Connecticut-based web company that was unaware of it’s clients’ business practices. Court documents say the men provided material support for the Taliban regime in Afghanistan and the Chechen mujahideen. They have admitted to operating a group of websites called Azzam Publications, which promoted violent jihad. They also recruited individuals to travel to Afghanistan for training.
Court documents show that Ahmad solicited Kevlar helmets, night vision goggles and camouflage combat suits and the men acknowledge that they intended their efforts to be used to kill U.S. nationals who were outside the U.S.
The feds are urging a 25-year prison term for Babar Ahmad, who they say surreptitiously led an operationally covert support cell in London.
Ahmad's attorney argues that the ten years his client has already spent in prison are enough punishment, saying he was trying to help Muslims under attack in Bosnia and Chechnya. The attorney said Ahmad regrets his support for the Taliban in Afghanistan.
Prosecutors are calling for a 15-year sentence for Ahsan, who they say provided Ahmad with previously classified material on the advance movement of a U.S. Naval Battle group. They also say he traveled to Afghanistan to attend training camps.
Ahmad’s attorney said the case is being closely watched in the Muslim world to see if the men will receive fair sentences.