So the trial provides an interesting window into Somali diversity as it is practiced in America (where Washington has welcomed over 83,000 refugees from that locale in the last 25 years, according to Refugee Resettlement Watch).
Rochester, Minn. Women Plead Not Guilty to Supporting Somali Terrorists, Fox Twin Cities, August 9, 2010Local news (WCCO) had a pretty informative piece about the case:
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Two women from Rochester, Minnesota pleaded not guilty Monday to federal charges of supporting the Somali terrorist group al-Shabaab.
Amina Farah Ali and Hawo Mohamed Hassan entered their pleas before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jeffrey Keyes in St. Paul, Minn. Keyes set a trial date of Oct. 12, but prosecutors told him that may change.
Ali and Hassan were among 14 people named in indictments unsealed last week. They are accused of being part of what U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder called ”a deadly pipeline” of money and fighters from the U.S. to Somalia.
The indictment alleges women and others went door-to-door in Minneapolis, Rochester and elsewhere in the U.S. and Canada to raise funds for al-Shabaab’s operations in Somalia. The indictment says the women raised the money under false pretenses, claiming it would go to the poor and needy, and used fake names for recipients to conceal that the money was going to al-Shabaab.
The indictment alleges Ali and Hassan also raised money by making direct appeals to people in teleconferences ”in which they and other speakers encouraged financial contributions to support violent jihad in Somalia.”
During one teleconference, the indictment says, Ali told others ”to forget about the other charities” and focus on ”the Jihad.”