Inland Empire News
Suspected terrorist ringleader appears in Riverside courtroom
RIVERSIDE, Calif. (KABC) -- The suspected ringleader in an alleged homegrown terror plot was in court Tuesday for a detention hearing. His lawyer claims his client was beaten during his recent capture in Afghanistan. Prosecutors described he was hurt.
The alleged ringleader of the homegrown terror plot is 34-year-old Sohiel Omar Kabir. He's accused of recruiting three other Inland Empire men to join him and launch violent jihad against U.S. forces in Afghanistan.
Very little if any emotion was seen from Kabir Tuesday morning, and there were no signs of any apparent injuries. But his attorney is making a number of allegations against the U.S. military forces who captured him in Afghanistan last month.
According to court documents, his attorney says after the arrest, Kabir was beaten and sustained severe injuries, including lacerations to his head that required staples. He also says Kabir now has memory problems, and he's troubled by a white flashing light that impairs his vision.
The U.S. Attorney's Office responded by saying Kabir was extremely combative during his capture, and he even tried to grab grenades and other weapons from the military forces who were trying to arrest him.
They say the U.S. military used whatever minimum force was necessary to take him into custody. And after that Kabir was then given medical treatment for those injuries.
Meanwhile, Kabir's lawyer disagrees with the judge's ruling to keep him behind bars. Defense attorney Jeffrey Aaron says there's not enough evidence to show Kabir was actually giving material support to terrorists.
"One of the standards is that they show that there's clear and convincing evidence of danger to the community, and we don't think that they've showed that," said Aaron.
The government also says Kabir was planning a suicide mission using C-4 explosive; a trip he never went on because he apparently got sick.
"There's no evidence that he ever went on any suicide mission. There's no evidence of that," said Aaron.
Kabir will remain behind bars as he awaits his trial. Despite his attorney's plea, the judge ruled that Kabir is a flight risk and a danger to the community.
riverside county, terrorism, inland empire news, rob mcmillan
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