[ISN] Webmaster held on terror charges

InfoSec News isn at c4i.org
Mon Aug 9 08:46:41 EDT 2004

Forwarded from: William Knowles <wk at c4i.org>


By Ben Charny 
Staff Writer, CNET News.com
August 6, 2004

The publisher of two pro-jihad Web sites has been arrested in London 
on suspicion of terrorism-related activities, U.S. investigators said 
on Friday. 

Babar Ahmad, 30, was remanded in custody by a London magistrates court 
on Friday on a U.S. extradition warrant. American authorities are 
seeking to try Ahmad on five federal charges, including material 
support of terrorism and prohibited support of the Taliban, according 
to a U.S. Department of Justice official. 

If found guilty, Ahmad would face more than 20 years in federal 

Ahmad is accused of raising money for Islamic militants through two 
American-based Web sites that he operated, Azzam.com and Qoqaz.net. 
Azzam was hosted by Internet service providers in Nevada and 
Connecticut, and Qoqaz was run outside the United States, the Justice 
Department said. 

Ahmad hid his connection to the sites using encrypted data and 
aliases, such as the name of his college roommate, according to a 
37-page affidavit outlining the charges that was filed this week in 
U.S. District Court in Connecticut. 

Between Feb. 29, 2000, and Dec. 17, 2001, both Web sites urged Muslims 
to "use every means at their disposal to undertake military and 
physical training for jihad" and told them to take up physical and 
firearms training, the Justice Department said. The sites also 
provided "explicit instructions" about how to raise funds and deliver 
them to the Taliban. It directed couriers to carry letters saying the 
money they carried was from charitable donations in the United States, 
the agency said.

U.S. investigators said they have uncovered e-mails on an Azzam 
account that link Ahmad to an unnamed Chechen Mujahedeen leader 
suspected of taking part in a Moscow theater attack in October 2002. 
In addition, they found an e-mail message dated July 2001 from a U.S. 
Naval enlistee on active duty that "expressed anti-American sentiment 
and offered praise for the Mujahedeen," the Justice Department said.

British authorities had apparently been investigating Ahmad since 
2003, when they recovered authentic U.S. naval battle plans while 
searching a location connected to the Web site publisher. Among other 
things, the documents describe the naval battle group's vulnerability 
to specific types of terrorist attacks, the Justice Department said.

"Communications without intelligence is noise;  Intelligence
without communications is irrelevant." Gen Alfred. M. Gray, USMC
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