Md. teen plans guilty plea in terror case in Pa.; charged with helping woman dubbed Jihad Jane

PHILADELPHIA — A Maryland teenager charged in a global terrorism plot plans to plead guilty in Pennsylvania.
Court papers filed Monday show 18-year-old Mohammad Hassan Khalid is due in court in Philadelphia for a change-of-plea hearing next month.

Khalid was an Ellicott City, Md., high school honors student when he became a rare juvenile arrested and detained by the FBI.

He’s charged with helping a Pennsylvania woman dubbed Jihad Jane raise money and recruits for a Muslim holy war. He pleaded not guilty in October.

His lawyer has declined to comment on the April 2 plea hearing. A prosecutor hasn’t returned a message seeking comment.

Dutch-Moroccans publish manifesto on youth criminality

A group of 38 Dutch-Moroccan professionals and organizations has published a manifesto calling for the cessation of criminality among Moroccan youths, intended to break the passivity in their community regarding crime among young Dutch people of Moroccan descent.

The group says it wants to increase awareness of the high crime rate among young Dutch-Moroccans being a major social problem for which their own community needs to take responsibility. The manifesto states that “our society is increasingly confronted with crime and violence committed by young Dutch-Moroccans…The criminal behavior of these young people has led to Dutch people of Moroccan descent increasingly being regarded as second-rate citizens, who more and more often are merely being tolerated, rather than accepted. In addition, the violent behavior of these young people is taking on ever more serious forms and claiming an increasing number of victims.”

The signatories plan to meet regularly to advise organisations and policy-making officials. Social worker Ibrahim Wijbenga says: “We want to emphasize that Dutch-Moroccan juvenile delinquents are not just our problem, they are a burden on society as a whole but receive too little quality attention… We lose more young people to crime than to Salafism.”

Toronto Man Found Guilty in Canada’s Landmark Case Under Anti-Terrorism Law

A Toronto man has been found guilty of taking part in the activities of a terrorist group known as the “Toronto 18”. The man, the first case for Canada’s antiterrorism laws, was charged in 2006 and cannot be named because he was a juvenile at that time. Arrested after a series of police raids in June 2006, the police and prosecutors claim that the suspects had planned to bomb government buildings and assassinate Prime Minister Harper.

Referring to the young man as an “eager acolyte,” Justice John Sproat of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice said in his reading of his 94-page judgment, “I am satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that a terrorist group existed,” adding that the group’s actions “were motivated by an interpretation of Islam which required an attack upon the near enemy, including the Canadian military and Parliament.” The key informant to the police, Mubain Shaikh, said outside the courthouse that he did not agree with the ruling because he did not believe the defendant was aware of the group’s violent plans.

Charges against seven of the 18 suspects have been dropped. Prosecutors and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police declined comment as the pending case of the remaining suspects accused are part of the same group. The young man faces up to 10 years in prison, but his lawyers suggest a stiff sentence is unlikely. Some critics have called into question civil liberties for those charged under this new antiterrorism legislation.

See full-text articles:

The Globe and Mail

The Globe and Mail

International Herald Tribune

Overview of the case and the defendant available here.

The National Post

The Toronto Star

From the Court to the Imam: Praise for a New Policing Idea

Politicians endorsed an initiative of co-operation with mosques in the fight against juvenile delinquency. A good idea is born, now we must see to it that it’s implemented. This was the reaction yesterday from Berlin’s Senator of the Interior and from the Youth and Justice Senators to the proposal that the police and mosque associations unite in dealing with juvenile delinquency.