Federal Indictments in IARA Case

1 decade 4 months 3 weeks ago March 07, 2007 Mar 7, 2007 Wednesday, March 07 2007 Wednesday, March 07, 2007 2:56:10 PM CST in News
Source: (Copyright 2007 The Associated Press All Rights Reserved.)

They're accused of stealing $1.4 million in government and public money and transferring the cash to Iraq from March 1991 to May 2003. The government also says the group falsely represented their fund-raising goals.

The charity has denied allegations that it has financed terrorism and has repeatedly tried to distinguish itself from a Sudanese group suspected of financing al-Qaida known as the Islamic African Relief Agency. In October 2004, federal agents raided the group's headquarters in Columbia. The charity's assets were later frozen and the organization lost a recent bid to have its assets unfrozen.

Included in the charges:

  • Mubarak Hamed, 50, executive director of IARA from the early 1990's until October 2004
  • Ali Bagegni, 53, a former educator in Columbia and an IARA-USA board member and treasurer until October 2004
  • Ahmad Mustafa, 54, an IARA-USA fundraiser
  • Khalid Al-Sudanee, 55, was designated by the U.S. Treasury Department as a supporter of global terrorism in October 2004
  • Abdel Azim El-Siddiq, 50, an IARA-USA fundraiser and vice president for international operations

Hamed and Mustafa were arrested in Columbia.  Both were charged in a Jefferson City federal court and released.  Bagegni now lives in Iowa City, Iowa.  He is expected in a federal court there later in the day.

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