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Published: Thursday, 1/15/2009

Two Chicago cousins plead guilty in Toledo to terrorism charges

BLADE STAFF

Two Chicago men pleaded guilty Thursday in U.S. District Court in Toledo to charges that they provided material support to terrorists and aimed to travel abroad in their quest to murder or maim U.S. military forces in Iraq or Afghanistan.

As a result of a binding agreement that led to the pleas, Zubair Ahmed, 29, could face 120 to 125 months in federal prison, and Khaleel Ahmed, 28, could be sentenced to between 92 and 115 months in prison. They face a maximum fine of $250,000 each.

The men, who are cousins, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge James G. Carr.

The actions yesterday supersede earlier charges to which they pleaded not guilty in December, 2007. They were arrested Feb. 21, 2007.

Their cases were related to those of Marwan El-Hindi, Mohammad Amawi, and Wassim Mazloum, who were found guilty in June by a federal jury of conspiring to kill and main people outside the United States and conspiring to provide material support. El-Hindi and Amawi also were convicted of disseminating information about explosives.

Federal prosecutors said that the criminal conspiracy involving the Ahmeds began about April 1, 2004 and continued until they were arrested.



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