US Muslim pleads guilty to using Internet for soliciting terrorism

WASHINGTON: A 22-year-old American Muslim from Pennsylvania pleaded guilty to using Internet to urge Muslim radicals in the US to engage in a wide range of terror attacks.

Emerson Winfield Begolly pleaded guilty in a Pittsburgh court to a single charge of ‘solicitation to commit a crime of violence’.

The solicitations included urging Muslims to sabotage train tracks, destroy phone lines, power lines, and cell phone towers, start forest fires, and engage in isolated attacks against Americans civilians, police, and military officials.

He urged others to commit ‘real terrorism, but on a small scale.’

He faces up to ten years in prison and a 125,000 dollar fine, the report said.

Begolly was an active moderator on the English-language version of the militant Islamic web discussion forum, Ansar al-Mujahideen Forum.

The second count of Begolly’s indictment charges that he posted and distributed on the a 101-page explosives course on Internet, written by a professor who was once Al-Qaeda’s top chemical and biological weapons expert.

“Begolly placed a number of postings, encouraging attacks within the United States,” the indictment said.

“He suggested the use of firearms, explosives, and propane tanks against targets such as police stations, post offices, synagogues, military facilities, train lines, bridges, cell phone towers, and water plants,” it added.

According to the indictment, he used the forum to express his approval of the 9/11 attacks, the kidnapping and beheading of American businessman Nick Berg in Iraq in 2004, and the kidnapping and beheading of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in Pakistan in 2002.

Begolly urged militant Muslims in the US to attack civilian aircraft, banks, military installations, Jewish schools, and Jewish and daycare centers, according to the indictment.

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