- The Washington Times - Wednesday, January 21, 2004

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A federal indictment unsealed yesterday charged a Minnesota man with conspiracy to support the al Qaeda terrorist network.

Mohammed Abdullah Warsame, 30, a Canadian citizen of Somali descent, was charged in an indictment returned Tuesday by a grand jury in Minneapolis.

The indictment contends that from March 2000 until his arrest last month, Mr. Warsame conspired to provide material support and resources for al Qaeda. No further details about the charges were immediately available.

“The charge against Warsame is a grim reminder that al Qaeda, aided by agents and cells in this country, continues its shadowy efforts to destroy the lives and freedoms of the people in the United States,” Attorney General John Ashcroft said.

News reports have linked Mr. Warsame to terror suspect Zacarias Moussaoui, who is the subject of the only U.S. prosecution related to the September 11 attacks. Moussaoui also was arrested in Minnesota and now awaits trial in Virginia on federal conspiracy charges.

Federal officials have refused to address reports of links between Mr. Warsame and Moussaoui, and their statement to the media yesterday did not mention Moussaoui.

Moussaoui was arrested while learning to fly a Boeing 747 at a Minnesota flight-simulator school two years ago.

Mr. Warsame was a student at Minneapolis Community and Technical College. His arrest and the secrecy have been a subject of concern in the local Somali community, which numbers an estimated 15,000 to 20,000.

The indictment was unsealed after an appearance by Mr. Warsame in federal court in New York yesterday. Mr. Warsame was held without bond pending his return to Minneapolis, prosecutors said.

Mr. Warsame was flown from Minneapolis to New York in late December, but it was not known why the move occurred.

Lawyer Sam Tokin, who represented Mr. Warsame yesterday, said his client did not enter a plea, and will be arraigned in Minneapolis. He declined to detail the charges against Mr. Warsame.

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