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US Finds Muslim Charity Leaders Guilty of Helping Terrorists


U.S. prosecutors have convicted five leaders of a now-defunct Muslim charity of channeling some $12 million to the Palestinian militant group Hamas.

A federal court in the southwestern city of Dallas, Texas Monday found the men guilty of 108 separate charges. They were former leaders of the Holy Land Foundation, which organizers said collected money for poverty-stricken Palestinians affected by the conflict with Israel.

The group was the largest Muslim-run charity in the United States before it was shut down by the U.S. government in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

This was the second attempt at a trial. The first ended in October 2007 after the judge declared a mistrial.

The defendants in the case denied sending money to Hamas and said the charges were politically motivated.

The United States declared Hamas a terrorist organization in 1995, making contributions to it illegal.

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