A suspected Islamist from Portland, Ore., was nabbed by law enforcement officers on Tuesday and charged with giving advice and financial assistance to one of three Islamic terrorists who perpetrated a 2009 suicide bombing in Lahore, Pakistan, that killed 35 people and injured more than 300 others, according to the FBI.
Pakistani officials stated at the time that 13 of the dead were policemen and seven were intelligence officials.
Reaz Qadir Khan, a naturalized U.S. citizen, was indicted on a single count of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, which carries a maximum penalty of life in federal prison.
FBI agents arrested the 48-year-old Khan at his residence in Portland without incident. He made his initial appearance Tuesday before Magistrate Paul Papak in federal court in Portland, where the charges against him were unsealed and defendant was detained, pending a bail hearing on Wednesday at 1:30 p.m.
“The indictment unsealed today set forth how Mr. Khan allegedly supported a terrorist who killed dozens of innocent people in Lahore, Pakistan,” said U.S. Attorney Amanda Marshall. “The events of May 27, 2009, remind us that terrorism is not defined by Muslims targeting non- Muslims but is defined by violent extremists targeting anyone they perceive as a threat to their oppressive agenda without regard for the religion, race, or nationality of their victims. We will find and prosecute those who use this country as a base to fund and support terrorists."
“Those who provide material support to terrorists are just as responsible for the deaths and destruction that follow as those who commit the violent acts,” said Greg Fowler, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Oregon. “The FBI will continue to focus on cutting off the flow of funds that help terrorists train, travel, and launch their attacks.”
According to the indictment, from Dec. 14, 2005 through June 2, 2009, Khan conspired with an individual named Ali Jaleel and others to provide material support and resources and to conceal the nature of such support and resources, knowing they would be used in a conspiracy to kill, maim, or kidnap persons abroad.
Jaleel was a Maldivian national who resided outside the United States. Jaleel died while participating in the suicide attack on the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Headquarters in Lahore on May 27, 2009, according to the indictment.
As part of the conspiracy, Khan allegedly used e-mail and intermediaries to provide advice and financial assistance to Jaleel and his family. Khan allegedly provided Jaleel with advice to help him in his efforts to travel undetected from the Maldives to commit violent jihad and used coded language when communicating with Jaleel to avoid detection.
In addition, Khan allegedly provided financial assistance so Jaleel could attend a training camp to prepare for an attack such as that carried out in Lahore on May 27, 2009. Khan also allegedly provided financial support and advice to Jaleel’s family while Jaleel traveled to Pakistan and after he died.
Jaleel and two others carried out the attack, according a statement from the U.S. Attorney's Office.
In a video released by an al-Qaeda media outlet after the attack, Jaleel was shown making a statement taking responsibility for the blast and preparing for the bombing at a training camp in Pakistan, prosecutors said.