Detroit-area man accused of supporting terrorist group - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Detroit-area man accused of supporting terrorist group

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A criminal complaint was filed Monday, March 17. A criminal complaint was filed Monday, March 17.

Federal agents say they have arrested and charged a Detroit-area man who had intentions of traveling to the Middle East to fight Syrian rebels with Hezbollah.

Mohammad Hassan Hamdan, 22, of Dearborn was taken into custody Sunday at Detroit Metropolitan Airport after passing through security but before boarding his flight.

An agent with the FBI Detroit Joint Terrorism Task Force said in a criminal complaint a source recorded multiple conversations with Hamdan, in which he spoke candidly about his desires and plans to assist Hezbollah in the war in Syria.

Hamdan came to the United States from Lebanon in June 2007. He has applied to become a naturalized citizen and was in the final stages of the citizenship process.

But the FBI says Hamdan also told the source he had been active with Hezbollah during the war with Israel in 2006, which, if true, contradicts his application for citizenship. An applicant must, under penalty of perjury, swear that he or she has never been associated with terrorists.

Hamdan had purchased a round-trip ticket to Lebanon to return to the U.S. in May. However, authorities believe he did not intend to return.

They say Hamdan gave his sister his car, and asked the source to sell his work vehicle for him and give the money to his family.

Once apprehended at the airport, Hamdan denied any plans to join Hezbollah. He said he was traveling to Lebanon to have dental work done.

Hamdan has been charged with breaking a law that prohibits support for terrorist organizations.

The Dearborn resident appeared in federal court Monday. He was returned to jail to await a March 24 court hearing.

Hezbollah is a Shiite Muslin group in Lebanon that the U.S. classifies as terrorist. The group has been supporting Syrian President Bashar Assad.

Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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