Ohio Couple Pleads Guilty to Terrorist Funding Charges
Manual on Terrorism 101: How to blend in in America: Stanley Cup shirt – Check. Camouflaged T-shirt with communist red star – Check… Oh, wait. That’s how you blend in in Canada, NOT America! LOL! EPIC FAIL!
Ohio Couple Pleads Guilty to Charges They Helped Fund Hezbollah
Published May 23, 2011 – via Fox News
TOLEDO, Ohio — An Ohio husband and wife have pleaded guilty to charges they helped finance a Mideast terrorist group.
Hor and Amera Akl were arrested nearly a year ago after authorities said an FBI informant provided them with $200,000 in cash that they were planning to hide in a vehicle to be shipped to Lebanon.
During a meeting with a federal judge in Toledo, the Akls on Monday pleaded guilty to conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. They had previously pleaded not guilty.
Federal prosecutors said they planned to conceal up to $500,000 and that the money would go to Hezbollah. The U.S. government lists Hezbollah as a terrorist organization and blames it for numerous attacks on Israel.
Just so you know, Hor and Amera Akl were netted in an FBI sting using an illegal immigrant as an informant:
The case against the couple is based on information provided by an FBI confidential informant, referred to as “Source-1,” who has been paid $23,425.07 for providing information to the FBI in Toledo since 2003, according to a federal affidavit.
Most of that money, more than $19,000, was paid since Oct. 1 for reporting related to the Akl case, the affidavit said.
The informant was initially arrested by Immigration and Naturalization Services in Cleveland in 2003, though charges were dropped upon the FBI’s request. The informant and his or her spouse were sponsored for permanent residency by the FBI in December, 2008.
Information from such a source was used by the FBI in two high-profile terrorism cases in 2006. Three Toledo men – Mohammad Amawi, Marwan El-Hindi, and Wassim Mazloum – were convicted of plotting to assist Iraqi insurgents. A West Toledo charity, KindHearts for Charitable Humanitarian Development Inc., was dissolved by the U.S. Treasury Department amid allegations it was shuffling cash to terrorists, though a judge condemned the government’s action as illegal in 2009.
And, predictably, their neighbors were just shocked; SHOCKED, I tell you!:
Several neighbors in their West Toledo neighborhood described the family as kind, generous neighbors and expressed disbelief that the friendly folks from the corner could have terrorist ties.
Mr. Lydy, their neighbor of two years, said he enjoyed Mr. Akl, who was handy and had a background in concrete work.
“I’m very surprised,” Mr. Lydy said of the FBI investigation and charges.
Alida Forshaw, 35, said Mrs. Akl went out of her way to invite her to an outdoor picnic to welcome her to the neighborhood when she moved in a few years ago. Children on the cul-de-sac near their home flocked to the swing set in the Akls’ backyard.
“She’s always super nice to, like, everybody,” Ms. Forshaw said.
The couple immigrated to the United States from a small rural area called the Bekaa Valley, also spelled Beqaa. Mr. Akl – who prefers to go by “Har” – was granted American citizenship in 1997. The family takes an annual vacation back to Lebanon, and were expected to leave today, Mr. Lydy said.
Mr. Akl once worked at Spice Bar, 319 North Superior St., in downtown Toledo near the new Huntington Center arena. His employment ended by the time the bar gained a new owner last year and became the Hat Trick Bar & Grill.
Ahmad Mahmoud, who bought the bar, said he knew Mr. Akl but never would have guessed that he could have been involved in alleged terrorist activities.
“All I knew about that guy was that he worked hard. He used to work 50, 60 hours a week, 70 hours a week to support his family,” said Mr. MahmoudExplore posts in the same categories: Terrorists