US charges 19 with supporting Somali terrorists
US justice officials have charged 19 people with direct support of Somali terrorism, a major step in efforts to root-out homegrown terrorism, US Attorney General Eric Holder said Thursday, dpa reported.
The US and international suspects include nine people already arrested overseas, five of whom have pleaded guilty. Ten of the defendants have not been found, and were believed to be out of the country, Holder said.
Holder said the suspects have formed a "deadly pipeline" for funnelling money and volunteers from the US to Somalia.
The Somali terrorist group Al-Shabaab is the target of the current move, but Holder said the charges represent an "unmistakable warning" for anyone in the US who is considering joining or supporting terrorist groups.
"You can expect to find yourself in a US jail cell or to become a casualty on a Somali battlefield," Holder warned those who think about such actions.