...thought he could get away with his crimes. It feels good to read this kind of news:
EDMONTON - A “surprised” Edmonton man accused of helping a terrorist network kill five Americans in a 2009 suicide bombing in Iraq made his first court appearance Thursday.
Sayfildin Tahir-Sharif, 38, looked around the Court of Queen’s Bench courtroom prior to the brief appearance, but all he saw was a horde of reporters staring at him.
The alleged terrorist – a short dark-haired man with a moustache, goatee and soul patch – was ordered brought back to court next Thursday for a possible bail hearing.
Defence lawyer Bob Aloneissi said Tahir-Sharif lives and works in Edmonton and has a wife and children. He said his client was “surprised” by his arrest and charges, which Aloneissi described as “probably the most serious charges you can face” and rare for Edmonton.
“He definitely had some reaction there,” said Aloneissi, who didn’t want to reveal personal details about Tahir-Sharif.
The lawyer said he doesn’t expect the extradition process to start for at least six months and will look into applying for bail for Tahir-Sharif.
The Iraq-born man, who U.S. authorities say also goes by the name Faruq Khalil Muhammad Isa, was arrested around 9 a.m. Wednesday in downtown Edmonton, according to RCMP spokesman Sgt. Patrick Webb.
“It was without incident and conducted by RCMP members,” said Webb. “And they were arresting in support of the FBI investigation into a suicide bombing in Iraq in April 2009.”
As well as allegedly helping in the deadly terrorist attack, U.S. officials also allege Tahir-Sharif wanted to conduct a suicide bombing himself, and told his mother “his greatest wish was to die a martyr and be greeted by 70 virgins in paradise.”
The U.S. Department of Justice said Tahir-Sharif was charged with conspiring to kill Americans abroad and providing material support to a terrorist conspiracy.
Tahir-Sharif “is charged in connection with his support for a multinational terrorist network that conducted multiple suicide bombings in Iraq and that is responsible for the deaths of five American soldiers,” said the justice department in a press release.
The soldiers were killed April 10, 2009, when “a Tunisian jihadist ... drove a truck laden with explosives to the gate of the United States Military's Forward Operating Base Marez in Mosul, Iraq.”