Trial begins for pair accused of fundraising for al-Shabab

AP News
Posted: Jul 11, 2016 12:29 PM

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) — The federal trial of two women accused of raising money for the Somali terrorist group al-Shabab has begun with one of the women admitting she supported the group. But her lawyer says the government can't prove she ever gave money to them.

Thirty-six-year-old Muna Osman Jama (JAW'-mah) of Reston and 46-year-old Hinda Osman Dhirane (DEER'-eh-nee) of Kent, Washington, were charged back in 2014 with providing material support to terrorists by funneling small amounts of money — less than $5,000 — to al-Shabab, an al-Qaida affiliate.

Prosecutors say the women used coded communications to hide their intent, referring to al-Shabab as "the family" and truckloads of supplies as "camels."

In opening statements at Monday's bench trial, Dhirane's attorney said her client's vocal support of al-Shabab is not a crime.