Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Domestic terrorists

Terrorists in Georgia:

Two Georgia men were each sentenced to more than 10 years in prison Monday for plotting to aid terrorists by sending homemade videos of Washington landmarks overseas and traveling abroad to try to turn their anti-American rhetoric into action.

Ehsanul Islam Sadequee, 23, was sentenced to 17 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of four terror-related charges in August. He faced a maximum sentence of as many as 60 years behind bars.

Hours later, Sadequee's friend Syed Haris Ahmed was sentenced to 13 years in prison on a charge of conspiring to support terrorist groups. The 25-year-old could have received as many as 15 years in prison after his June conviction.

The men, who are both U.S. citizens, were also sentenced to 30 years in supervised release.

Terrorists in Illinois:

A Chicago man accused of planning a terrorist attack against a Danish newspaper knew in advance about a plot to attack Mumbai and offered congratulations to the killers afterward, federal prosecutors charged Monday.

In papers filed in federal court in Chicago, prosecutors said Tahawwur Hussain Rana learned an attack was about to happen while traveling in Dubai days before the Nov. 26, 2008, attack in India that left 166 people dead.

Rana, a 48-year-old Chicago businessman, is charged with providing material support to terrorists.

Terrorists in Maryland:

Federal prosecutors are considering a trial in New York City for a Guantanamo Bay detainee named Majid Khan, who grew up in the United States before allegedly enlisting in al-Qaida, a person familiar with the discussions said Monday.

Khan is among fewer than 20 detainees at the U.S. detention center in Cuba labeled high-value by the U.S. government, people thought to be senior members of al-Qaida or to have extensive knowledge of the terror network.

The Justice Department is weighing whether to put him on trial in federal court in Brooklyn, a borough of New York, but no decision has been made, according to the person discussing the deliberations on condition of anonymity.

Attorney General Eric Holder already has decided that self-declared 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four accused henchmen will be tried in federal court in lower Manhattan, also New York City.

Sending Khan and possibly other Guantanamo detainees to trial in Brooklyn raises the possibility of one city hosting two major terrorism trials in separate locations, although it is difficult to predict when either would start, given the lengthy pretrial process for each that could easily last more than one year.

Khan was a legal U.S. resident who lived in Baltimore, Maryland, 40 miles north of Washington, before moving to Pakistan.

Terrorists are everywhere, and they're not all being caught, and it's not paranoid to believe that it's only a matter of time before there's another major domestic attack. Unfortunately, combating terrorists is no longer a major concern of the federal government.

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