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Two Britons in U.S. plead guilty to terror-related charges

Source: Reuters - Tue, 10 Dec 2013 07:21 PM
Author: Reuters
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(New throughout, updates with second man pleading guilty)

By Richard Weizel

NEW HAVEN, Conn., Dec 10 (Reuters) - Two British nationals who ran a website that promoted jihad and supported al Qaeda pleaded guilty in a U.S. court on Tuesday to charges of providing material support for terrorists.

The men, Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan, each said in U.S. District Court in New Haven, Connecticut, that they were guilty of two counts of providing support to terrorists for running the site, which raised funds for Muslim militants in Afghanistan and Chechnya.

Ahmad faces the possibility of up to 25 years in prison and two to five years' probation. Ahsan faces up to 15 years. Each could be fined up to $500,000.

The pair, who appeared in separate hearings, did not plead guilty to additional charges of conspiracy to injure the property of a foreign government and Ahmad did not plead guilty to a charge of money laundering.

The two were extradited to the United States from Britain last year.

Ahmad, dressed in an orange prison jumpsuit, stood with his hands behind his back and gave brief answers to questions from District Judge Janet Hall, who said she would review his plea and set sentencing for March 4.

They were among five men extradited to the United States from Britain last year to face terrorism-related charges. That group also included one-eyed radical Islamist cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri on charges related to a 1998 hostage-taking in Yemen. (Writing by Scott Malone; Editing by Colleen Jenkins, Steve Orlofsky and Nick Zieminski)

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