Witness: Minn. terror defendant not at meetings

By Amy Forliti

Associated Press

Published: Wednesday, Oct. 10 2012 7:01 p.m. MDT

Hassan spent about three months in a training camp in Somalia. Key leaders of al-Shabab were there, including Saleh Ali Saleh Nabhan, al-Qaida's East Africa planner who was killed in a helicopter strike in Somalia in 2009; Jehad Mostafa, a California man and al-Shabab leader under Nabhan; and Omar Hammami, an Alabama man who appears in the group's recruitment videos.

Near the end of Hassan's time at the training camp, a media crew arrived to film some of the exercises. Hassan was given a speaking role in that video. Hassan also appeared in the video of the ambush of Ethiopian troops, and in a video in which another Minneapolis man speaks — urging brothers overseas to join the fight.

After the ambush, Hassan was given permission to go visit family in Merca — and he did not return to al-Shabab. He was eventually arrested and returned to the U.S. He began working with the FBI, but let others believe he was still with al-Shabab. He awaits sentencing on two terror-related counts and one count of lying to the FBI.

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