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US National Guard Member Accused of Aiding al-Qaida - 2004-02-13

A member of the U.S. National Guard has been arrested in the western state of Washington and charged with trying to provide information to the al-Qaida terrorist network.

Army officials say Specialist Ryan Anderson has been charged with what is termed "aiding the enemy by wrongfully attempting to communicate and give intelligence to the al-Qaida terrorist network."

It is not known what information the 26-year-old National Guardsman allegedly attempted to provide to al-Qaida.

But the officials disclose he was taken into custody in a joint operation involving both military and federal law enforcement agents. The tank crew member, who Army officials say professes to be a Muslim, is being held at Fort Lewis, an Army base south of the city of Seattle.

His unit is scheduled to depart for Iraq shortly for a planned one-year deployment.