- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 16, 2015

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Three relatives charged in a conspiracy to ship weapons from Iowa to Lebanon are pleading not guilty.

Ali Herz; his brother, Bassem Herz; and Bassem Herz’s wife, Sarah Zeaiter, entered the pleas Tuesday in federal court in Cedar Rapids. Trial was set for Aug. 10.

The fourth suspect, Ali Herz’s son, Adam Herz, is expected to follow suit during an arraignment hearing Wednesday.

The four were arrested last month after agents intercepted shipping containers headed from Cedar Rapids to Beirut that had many guns and rounds of ammunition hidden inside construction equipment. A 46-count indictment was returned by a federal grand jury this month.

Investigators say they were making money trafficking arms to a war-torn region and may have ties to Hezbollah, which the U.S. government considers a terrorist organization.

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