Court critical of Somali extradition case

Rotterdam district court has asked the US authorities to supply it additional information in their request for the extradition of a Somali man, arrested at an asylum seekers centre last November.

Mohamud Said Omar, 44, is alleged to have helped extremists travel to Somalia to train with the radical Islamic movement Al Shabaab.
He was arrested at a refugee centre in Dronten, Flevoland in November 2009.
The man has also lived in Minneapolis where he is said to have recruited college students – up to 20 according to some reports.

Omar’s lawyers say he never intended to help terrorists. ‘He denies that he has ever been involved in any way whatsoever with the financing of terrorism,’ lawyer Bart Stapert said at the extradition hearing in February.
His lawyers also point out that the alleged offences relate to a time before Al Shabaab was considered a terrorist organisation and that charges against him are not criminal offences in the Netherlands.
According to news agency AP, the court has asked the US to provide more information on the country’s definition of a terror group, the maximum sentence Omar faces and whether the US viewed al Shabaab as a terrorist organisation before March 2008.
The court will now rule on the case on May 17.

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