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Homeland Security

Padilla, Co-Defendants Found Guilty in US Terror Trial

16 August 2007

A jury in the southern U.S. city of Miami, Florida has convicted al-Qaida supporter Jose Padilla and two co-defendants of all counts in their terrorism trial.

Prosecutors said the three were part of a terrorist support cell in Florida that provided money and recruits for Islamist groups around the world. They were found guilty of conspiracy to murder, kidnap, and maim, conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, and providing that support.

Sentencing is set for December fifth. The men could get life in prison.

The jury deliberated only about a day and a half after a three-month trial for Padilla, who is a U.S. citizen, and his co-defendants - a Lebanese-born Palestinian and a naturalized U.S. citizen from Jordan.

The government earlier accused Padilla of plotting to set off a radioactive "dirty bomb" inside the United States, but that allegation was not part of the charges.

Padilla was arrested in May 2002 while returning to the U.S. from Egypt and Pakistan. He was held in a military prison in the southeastern U.S. state of South Carolina for three-and-a-half years before being charged. His lawyers say he was tortured during that time.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

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