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American Man Convicted In Failed Suicide Attack On U.S. Base In Afghanistan

An artist's impression of Muhanad Mahmoud al-Farekh in a federal court last year in New York.
An artist's impression of Muhanad Mahmoud al-Farekh in a federal court last year in New York.

A U.S. citizen was convicted on September 29 of supporting the Al-Qaeda extremist group and participating in a failed suicide bombing that targeted an American military base in Afghanistan in 2009.

U.S. prosecutors said Muhanad Mahmoud Al Farekh, 31, was convicted by a federal jury in New York on charges of conspiring to murder Americans, use of a weapon of mass destruction, and supporting a foreign terrorist organization.

Farekh faces a possible sentence of life in prison in a sentencing scheduled for January 11. But his attorney told Reuters on September 29 that he believes legal errors contributed to Farekh's conviction and he will appeal the case.

The defense had argued in court that the evidence provided by prosecutors was too weak to convict Farekh.

Prosecutors said Farekh traveled to Pakistan in 2007 on a mission to join Al-Qaeda and kill Americans.

They presented evidence that his fingerprints were found on packing tape for a bomb that failed to detonate during the attack on the U.S. Forward Operating Base Chapman in Afghanistan.

Prosecutors said an accomplice detonated another device, injuring multiple people on the base.

A man who traveled with Farekh in 2007, Ferid Imam, has also been indicted in the case, but his whereabouts are unknown.

Prosecutors said Imam provided training at an Al-Qaeda camp in Pakistan in 2008 to three men later found guilty of plotting a bombing attack on the New York City subway system.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters

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