Pakistan case nearly cost US terror suspect limbs
Last Updated: Tuesday, July 28, 2009, 21:02
Raleigh: An American faced stern punishment after being convicted of robbing a bank in Pakistan: Losing a hand and foot.

Daniel Patrick Boyd avoided the sentence when his conviction was overturned. Two decades later, the 39-year-old is accused of organising a group in the US with international terrorist aspirations, and he faces life in prison if convicted.

Prosecutors say Boyd's time in Pakistan also included terrorist training that he brought back to North Carolina, where over the past three years he allegedly recruited followers willing to die as martyrs waging jihad, an Arabic word that means the struggle to do good and commonly used by extremists to mean holy war.

Seven members of the group, including Boyd and two adult sons, were arrested yesterday and charged with providing material support to terrorism and "conspiracy to murder, kidnap, maim and injure persons abroad."

Prosecutors would not detail what the group was allegedly targeting overseas. An indictment said they provided money, training, transportation and men to help terrorists.

Boyd and some of the others traveled to Israel in June 2007 intending to wage "violent jihad", but returned home without success, the document said.

Boyd lived at an unassuming lakeside home in a rural area south of Raleigh, where he and his family operated a drywall business.

Jim Stephenson, a neighbor in Willow Spring, said he often saw the Boyd family walking their dog. The indictment shocked neighbours.

"We never saw anything to give any clues that something like that could be going on in their family," Stephenson said.

Authorities believe Boyd's alleged roots in terrorism run deep. They said when he was in Pakistan and Afghanistan from 1989 through 1992, he had military-style training in terrorist camps and fought the Soviets, who were occupying Afghanistan.

It is unclear when he and his family returned to the US, but in March 2006, Boyd traveled to Gaza and attempted to introduce his son to individuals who also believed that violent jihad was a personal religious obligation, the indictment said.

Two of his sons, Zakariya Boyd, 20, and Dylan Boyd, 22, were named in the indictment. Another son, Luqman, died two years ago in a car accident. The document did not say which son Boyd allegedly took to Gaza.

The others charged are Anes Subasic (33), Mohammad Omar Aly Hassan (22), and Ziyad Yaghi (21). Hysen Sherifi (24), a native of Kosovo and a US legal permanent resident was also charged in the case. He was the only person arrested who was not a US citizen.

Bureau Report

First Published: Tuesday, July 28, 2009, 21:02

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