Bloomberg News

Al Shabaab Associate Admits to Supporting Terrorist Group

June 13, 2012

An associate of the al Shabaab terrorist organization in Somalia pleaded guilty in New York to providing material support to the group and receiving military training in 2009.

Mohamed Ibrahim Ahmed, 38, pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy and faces as long as 10 years in prison, according to a statement today by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara in New York. Ahmed, an Eritrean native who lived in Sweden before going to Somalia, was arrested in Nigeria in 2009 and transferred to the U.S. the following year.

“Mohamed Ibrahim Ahmed traveled a long way from his home in Sweden to Somalia, where he took up the cause of al Shabaab, a deadly terrorist organization and sworn enemy of the United States and its people,” Bharara said in the statement.

While he was in Somalia, Ahmed contributed about 3,000 euro ($3,772.50) to al Shabaab and was trained to make and detonate bombs, according to prosecutors. Al Shabaab seeks to destabilize the Somali government and to drive foreign troops out of the country, according to the statement. The group has recruited foreign fighters, including from the U.S., prosecutors said.

Sean Maher, a lawyer for Ahmed, didn’t immediately return a call to his office for comment on the guilty plea.

The case is U.S. v. Ahmed, 10-131, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan.)

To contact the reporters on this story: Edvard Pettersson in Los Angeles at epettersson@bloomberg.net; Bob Van Voris in New York federal court at rvanvoris@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net.


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