Man linked to al Qaeda indicted
One of a handful of men suspected of being the 20th 9/11 hijacker was turned away by immigration officials in Florida before the attacks.
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(CNN) -- A Minnesota man has been indicted on charges he provided material support to al Qaeda for more than three years, the Justice Department said Wednesday.
Authorities say Mohammed Abdullah Warsame, 30, attended an al Qaeda training camp in Afghanistan at which Osama bin Laden was present.
Warsame was indicted Tuesday by a federal grand jury in Minneapolis. The indictment was unsealed Wednesday after he appeared in federal court in New York and ordered held without bond pending his return to Minnesota to face the charges.
Warsame, a Canadian citizen of Somali descent, was first interviewed December 8 by FBI agents in Minneapolis and admitted his involvement in the training, according to an affidavit released Wednesday.
"During this interview Warsame admitted ... that he had also used the alias 'Abu Maryam' in connection with his attendance at a training camp at which Osama bin Laden was present in Afghanistan during 2000 and 2001," the affidavit says.
Warsame was arrested the next day and remained in federal custody in Minnesota until he was flown to New York on December 23 in response to a material witness warrant issued by a federal judge in Manhattan.
Official sources indicated Warsame may have known accused terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui, but documents do not mention Moussaoui, who faces a federal trial in Virginia on terrorism conspiracy charges in connection with the attacks of September 11, 2001. (Feds want Moussaoui case order reversed)
Moussaoui's suspicious behavior at a Minneapolis-area flight school led to his arrest a month before the September 11 attacks.
"The indictment alleges that from March 2000 and continuing through December 8, 2003, Warsame conspired to provide material support and resources to al Qaeda, a designated foreign terrorist organization," said U.S. Attorney Tom Heffelfinger in Minneapolis.
Omar Jamal, and executive director of the Somali Justice Advocacy Center in Minneapolis, said he is prepared for a lengthy process.
"We support the government in its fight against terrorism. We see this indictment as an early part of a long legal process," Jamal said when reached at his home.
Warsame had worked as a computer science tutor at Minneapolis Community Technical College, Jamal said.