Friday, March 09, 2007

Masjid As-Salam mosque leaders sentenced (Albany, NY)


Photo: Yassin Aref, 34, is former imam of Masjid As-Salam mosque.

ALBANY, N.Y. — Two leaders of an Albany mosque who were snared in an FBI sting involving a fictional terror strike were sentenced Thursday to 15 years in federal prison.

The former imam, Yassin Aref, professed innocence before his sentencing and criticized the government's treatment of Muslims. "I never had any intention to harm anyone in this country," said Aref, a 36-year-old Kurdish refugee. "And I don't know why I'm guilty." +

Pizzeria owner Mohammed Hossain, a founder of the Masjid As-Salam mosque, said in a voice choked with emotion that he knew nothing about bombs and terrorism. "I do not know why it was me who was chosen. I was not a criminal," he said. "I was not even thinking of committing a crime."

The two were convicted in October for their roles in a money laundering scheme involving an FBI informant who posed as an illegal arms dealer. The informant asked Hossain to launder $50,000 from the sale of a shoulder-fired missile from China that would be used to kill a Pakistani diplomat in New York City, authorities said. Source: Fox News.

+ Mothers in Court for Aiding Rape of Daughters by Qur'an Teacher
+ Sudan close to scuttling U.N. troop deal on Darfur
+ Iraqi trial judge who sentenced former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein to death has asked for asylum in Britain, Al Jazeera television said on Friday

+ FBI Investigations Faulted in Scathing Annual Report
+ Pentagon Struggles to Find Fresh Troops
+ Senior Iraqi Qaeda-linked militant arrested-TV
+ U.S. commander for northern Iraq has asked for more troops to clamp down on insurgent attacks and sectarian violence in the volatile province of Diyala




Sgt. Anthony Haas. right, of Seguin, TX., of the 6-9 squadron, 3rd brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, and Iraqi soldiers rest during a routine patrol Muqdadiyah, Iraq, 90 kilometers (60 miles) north of Baghdad, Friday, March 9, 2007. Associated Press © 2007


Soldiers of the 6-9 squadron, 3rd brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, inspect a motorcycle for explosives just outside Muqdadiyah, Iraq, 90 kilometers (60 miles) north of Baghdad, Friday, March 9, 2007. Associated Press © 2007

+ Iran sees meeting as test for U.S. policy in Iraq
+
Pakistani soldier, three militants killed in clash
+
Iraq kidnappers demand Germany quit Afghanistan
+
Car bomb kills 5, wounds 10 in eastern Baghdad

+
Missing Iranian Talking to Western Agents -Report: giving Western intelligence agencies information on Lebanon's Hezbollah and Iran's ties to the group, the Washington Post reported...an instrumental founder of Hezbollah, a retired Israeli spy said

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