Wednesday, February 14, 2007

US Citizen Charged With Undergoing Terrorist Training

A US citizen was charged with receiving training from a terrorist organization for his alleged involvement with Islamic fighters in Somalia, the US Justice Department said. Daniel Joseph Maldonado, also known as Daniel Aljughaifi, 28, was arrested in Kenya while fleeing Ethiopian and Somali forces that had ousted Islamists who had ruled most of Somalia for six months. 'This case represents the first criminal prosecution of an American suspected of joining forces with Islamic extremist fighters in Somalia,' Kenneth L Wainstein, assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's National Security Division said in a statement.'The prosecution of Mr Maldonado demonstrates the scope of our laws and serves as a warning to others who would travel overseas to wage violent jihad.' Madonado allegedly travelled to Somalia to participate in a holy war with the Union of Islamic Courts and al-Qaeda, according to the criminal complaint. He is also charged with conspiring to use an explosive device outside the United States, which carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. Receiving training from a terrorist organization carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.