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Friday, December 2, 2011

Somali woman pleads guilty in US terror trial

December 2, 2011

A Somali immigrant living in California pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to providing money and personnel to Somalia's Al-Shebab militants.

Nima Yusuf, 25, admitted she had entered into an agreement with four other Somali immigrants to provide material support to the Shebab, an Al-Qaeda linked group that controls much of central and southern Somalia.

She also admitted to aiding the violent extremist group despite knowing that the United States has designated the Shebab as a foreign terrorist organization and that providing money or other material support to it is illegal, the US Justice Department said in a statement.

The other four immigrants -- Mohamed Abdullahi Hassan, Abdisalan Hussein Ali, Cabdulaahi Ahmed Faarax and Abdiweili Yassin Isse -- were indicted last year for supporting the Shebab.

Faarax was also charged with solicitation to commit a crime of violence for allegedly recruiting three men to travel to Somalia to fight for the Shebab. One of the men is believed to have carried out a suicide bombing for the Shebab around October 2008.

As part of her guilty plea, Yusuf admitted she had sent about $1,450 to Hassan, Ali, Faarax and Isse between February and November 2010 while they were fighting for the Shebab in Somalia.

She also admitted to falsely denying sending any money to Somalia when she was twice interviewed by FBI and Department of Homeland Security agents.

Yusuf, who lives in San Diego, is due to appear in US District Court for sentencing on February 10 and will be held without bail until then. She faces up to 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.  


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