FBI Severs Ties With Prominent Muslim Charity Group

Jan 2009 David Goodhue - AHN Reporter

Miami, FL (AHN) - The FBI is severing ties with a prominent U.S. Muslim advocacy group because the agency says there's mounting evidence the group has ties with the Palestinian militant organization, Hamas.

The bureau had a working relationship with the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, but has cut ties with the group after a 15-year FBI investigation that led to the conviction of a Hamas contributor in December, where a CAIR official was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator.

An FBI official told FOX News that field offices nationwide have stopped dealing with CAIR.

The FBI worked with members of CAIR who were used as liaisons with the American Muslim community.

FBI agents say CAIR's executive director, Nihad Awad, was involved in planning meetings with the Holy Land Foundation. Five Holy Land Foundation members were convicted in December of funneling $12.4 million to Hamas. The U.S. government considers Hamas a terrorist organization.

Prosecutors in that trial identified CAIR's chairman emeritus Omar Ahmad an unindicted co-conspirator in the case.

CAIR officials unsuccessfully sued to have Ahmad's name removed as a co-conspirator, and the group is protesting the FBI's decision to sever relations.

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