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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Mar 29, 2012

The Hutaree terror case officially ended today with the last two defendants cutting deals with the government, two days after their five codefendants were cleared of all charges by a federal judge.  While defendants David Stone Sr. and his son Joshua Stone faced a handful of weapons violations, they pleaded guilty to possession of a machine gun that is punishable up to 10 years in prison.  The judge agreed to release the two on bond.  The prosecution objected to releasing Stone Sr., saying he remained a threat to society, but did not object to releasing his son Joshua Stone.  Under the terms of the plea agreements, Stone Sr. faces 33 to 48 months in prison. Joshua Stone faces 27-33 months. They will be sentenced in August.
Read more: Detroit Free Press

A former nuclear physicist went on trial in Paris on Thursday on accusations of plotting attacks with the North African wing of Al Qaeda.  But his defenders say he only sent some angry emails and fear he may be unfairly linked with a gunman who recently sowed terror in southern France.  Adlene Hicheur, who used to work at Europe's most prestigious particle accelerator, has been in prison for two and a half years awaiting trial.  Now that the trial has started, his allies worry the timing couldn't be worse: it comes days after France's biggest terror attacks in years.

The Merah case has stirred up such a national fervor that re-election-minded President Nicolas Sarkozy has floated a proposal to make it a crime to repeatedly visit jihadist websites -- in part because French counterrorism officials fear "lone wolf" attacks by militants who self-radicalize online.  And Hicheur's case is all about the Internet.

Read more: Fox News

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that PATRICK NAYYAR, a citizen of India who had been residing illegally in the United States, was found guilty yesterday in Manhattan federal court of five counts related to support he attempted to provide Hizballah, a designated foreign terrorist organization.  NAYYAR was convicted after a seven-day jury trial before U.S. District Judge Robert W. Sweet.

According to the superseding indictment filed in Manhattan federal court and the evidence presented at trial:  Between July 2009 and September 2009, NAYYAR and his co-conspirator, Conrad Stanisclaus Mulholland, agreed to provide weapons, ammunition, and vehicles to Hizballah, a U.S. designated foreign terrorist organization based in Lebanon.  During a series of meetings with a confidential informant working with the FBI, who represented himself as able to deliver materials to Hizballah, NAYYAR and Mulholland agreed to sell guns, ammunition, vehicles, bulletproof vests, and night vision goggles to the confidential informant.  During these meetings, NAYYAR and Mulholland provided the confidential informant with a handgun, a box of ammunition, and a pick-up truck, believing that he would deliver the items to Hizballah in Lebanon.

Read more: FBI Press Release

The two missions of fighting terrorism and combating global organized crime are increasingly linked, senior Defense Department officials told Congress yesterday.  Michael A. Sheehan, assistant secretary of defense for special operations and low-intensity conflict; Garry Reid, deputy assistant secretary of defense for special operations and combating terrorism; and William F. Wechsler, deputy assistant secretary of defense for counternarcotics and global threats, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee’s emerging threats and capabilities subcommittee.  The hearing focused on the Pentagon’s role in implementing the national strategies for counterterrorism and combating transnational organized crime under the 2013 defense budget request.

“Terrorism, drug trafficking and other forms of transnational organized crime are increasingly intertwined,” Sheehan noted, adding that his office -- which is responsible for overall supervision of special operations forces -- is uniquely positioned to provide policy guidance and program oversight to the department’s efforts in both missions.  Wechsler noted four trends in terrorism and transnational crime:
-- Terrorist groups are adopting criminal techniques, including drug trafficking, to raise funds;
-- Criminal organizations are adopting terrorist techniques, such as beheadings;
-- Terrorist organizations and criminal organizations that have been separate are now “working together in ways that previously we hadn't seen … [such as] the attempted assassination of a Saudi ambassador here in the United States”; and
-- Some countries are using criminal activity to produce revenue.

Read more: US DOD