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American citizen pleads guilty to aiding al-Qaeda operative

Syed Hashmi, Pakistani-born, US citizen, was the first to be extradited from UK to US under post 9/11 laws.

April 28, 2010 8:59 by

Held in solitary confinement in Manhattan since his extradition from Britain, Syed Hashmi, aged 30, has pleaded guilty in US court to charges that he sheltered a member of al-Qaeda in his London apartment, providing money and other support to the man, the BBC reported Wednesday.

Hashmi entered into a plea-bargain with prosecutors, who have recommended a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison in exchange for the man’s admission on certain charges.

Hashmi is a Pakistani-born, naturalized US citizen, who reportedly joined the Islamist group, al-Muhajiroun in UK, after entering the country on a student visa in 2003. He is the first to be extradited from UK to US under the post 9/11 legislation, the BBC reported.

Hashmi’s plea bargain would reduce the maximum sentence sought by prosecutors and avoid court trial. Additional counts against Hashmi would also be dropped as part of the bargain, according to the report.

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