US detains man over links to Lashkar-e-Taiba
WASHINGTON: US authorities on Friday said they had arrested a man on charges of providing support to Lashkar-e-Taiba, a Pakistan-based jihadi group which has been named a terrorist organisation by the United States.
Ali Asad Chandia was arrested late on Thursday at College Park, in the Maryland suburbs of the US capital, said Assistant Attorney General Alice Fisher in a statement.
Chandia and a Briton, Mohammed Ajmal Khan, face a four-count indictment on charges of providing support to Lashkar-e-Taiba. Each charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.
Chandia was to be formally indicted at a district court in Alexandria, Virginia, also in the Washington suburbs, on September 23.
Khan, who has been detained in Britain, is believed to be a top recruiting official for Lashkar-e-Taiba and Fisher’s statement said Chandia and Khan met in late 2001 in Pakistan.
“Khan allegedly travelled to the United States in 2002 and 2003 to acquire equipment for Lashkar-e-Taiba, with assistance both times from Chandia,” said the statement.
The group is accused of staging attacks against Indian targets in held Kashmir. The United States declared it a terrorist group in December 2001. afp