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2 Chicago Men Arrested for Overseas Terror Plot


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The U.S. Justice Department says two men in the city of Chicago have been arrested for plotting a terrorist attack against a Danish newspaper that published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.

The two men: 49-year-old David Coleman Headley and 48-year-old Tahawwur Hussain Rana, were charged in separate criminal complaints unsealed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Chicago.

The Justice Department says the two were plotting the attack with Pakistani-based terrorist organizations.

U.S. officials say Headley traveled to Denmark twice this year to allegedly identify potential targets, and also traveled to Pakistan after one of the trips to Denmark. It says Rana allegedly helped arrange Headley's travel and discussed potential targets for attacks.

Headley is charged with conspiracy to commit terrorist acts outside the United States. Both men are charged with conspiracy to provide material support to terrorism.

Officials say Headley was arrested earlier this month as he tried to board a flight in Chicago to Philadelphia, intending to travel on to Pakistan. Rana was taken into custody at his home.

Headley faces life in prison for conspiracy to maim or murder persons abroad. The conspiracy to provide material support to terrorism charge carries a maximum sentence of 15 years.

The Justice Department says Headley visited two offices of the Jyllands-Posten in Denmark on the pretense he was visiting on behalf of an immigration group, First World Immigration Services.

The newspaper in 2005 printed cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that led to angry protests in the Muslim world.

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