Entries in Abu Hamza (2)


Terrorist Suspects Extradited to Face Charges in US

Bruno Vincent/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Having lost an eight-year battle to fight extradition, radical preacher Abu Hamza al-Masri and four other suspected al Qaeda suspects were brought into two U.S. courtrooms on Saturday to hear charges on various terrorist-related activities.  All five are British citizens.

The defendants were actually flown into the U.S. overnight Friday after losing a last-ditch appeal in British courts to block extradition based on human rights concerns about the conditions they would face in U.S. prisons.

Preet Bharara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, told reporters that prosecuting three of the men, "makes good on a promise to the American people to use every available diplomatic, legal, and administrative tool to pursue and prosecute charged terrorists no matter how long it takes."

Bharara said that Hamza, Adel Abdel Bary and Khaled al Fawwaz "were at the nerve centers of al Qaeda's acts of terror, and they caused blood to be shed, lives to be lost, and families to be shattered."

Hamza, the one-eyed and hook-handed former imam of a radical London mosque, faces charges of conspiring to set-up a terror training camp in Oregon and kidnapping 16 tourists in Yemen, two of them Americans.

Among other things, Bary and Fawwaz are charged in the deadly 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

Meanwhile, at a federal court in New Haven, Conn., Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan were charged with running a pro-jihadi website to provide terrorists with cash, recruits and equipment.

All five, who pleaded not guilty during their brief courtroom appearances, will be formally arraigned on Tuesday.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Accused Terrorist Abu Hamza en Route to US

Abu Hamza in 2004. Bruno Vincent/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Radical cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, the man authorities said tried to set up a terrorist training camp on American soil, is finally on his way to stand trial in the U.S. after an eight-year delay.

Hamza, along with four other suspected terrorists, will fly to the States in the custody of U.S. Marshals, British officials told ABC News just hours after the defendants lost a last ditch appeal to the British courts. The officials said there had been "dreadful weather" but they still have "every intention to get them airborne tonight."

"There is great relief here that these men who have used every opportunity to delay and frustrate extradition will soon be on their way to face justice in U.S.," one British government source told ABC News.

An indictment against Hamza, the one-eyed and hook-handed former imam at the Finsbury Park mosque in London, was unsealed after his arrest by British authorities in 2004. It accused Hamza of a litany of terrorism-related crimes including his alleged role in what turned out to be a deadly hostage-taking operation in Yemen. It also said Hamza had tried to set up a terrorist training camp in Oregon and was accused of providing material support to al Qaeda and the Taliban.

The four other suspects, Adel Abdul Bary, Khalid al-Fawwaz, Babar Ahmad and Syed Talha Ahsan, are also facing terrorism-related charges.

Together, the group had put up fierce legal opposition to extradition and had argued they had human rights concerns about the conditions they would face in U.S. prisons. The U.S. government first requested Hamza's extradition when he was picked up by British police in 2004.

The U.S. Embassy in London said in a release it was "pleased" with the U.K. court's decision to extradite the group and said the move marked "the end of a lengthy process of litigation."

"The U.S. Government agrees with the ECHR's findings that the conditions of confinement in U.S. prisons -- including in maximum security facilities -- do not violate European standards. In fact, the Court found that services and activities provided in U.S. prisons surpass what is available in most European prisons," the embassy said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio