US terrorism suspect pleads not guilty to bombings conspiracy charge

[JURIST] Suspected terrorist Najibullah Zazi pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction. Prosecutors from the US Department of Justice (DOJ) [official website] have said [LAT report] that they have significant information to use against Zazi, while his lawyer has countered that the prosecution cannot prove Zazi's guilt unless they identify the other conspirators. At Tuesday's hearing in the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York [official website], Zazi was denied bail and ordered to remain in jail until his December 3 court date.

Zazi was indicted [indictment, PDF; JURIST report] last week with conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction, and could could face up to life in prison if convicted. Zazi, a native of Afghanistan, was arrested [BBC report] by FBI agents earlier this month in Colorado. He was originally charged with making false statements to the FBI, but those charges were dropped in light of the new charge. Zazi's father, Mohammed Zazi, and a third man, Ahmad Wais Afzali, were also arrested. Mohammed Zazi and Afzali have both been released on bail.

 

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