Arizona Man Charged With Lying About Alleged Hamas Fundraising
Update: On May 6, 2009, Akram Musa Abdallah pleaded guilty to making false statements to a government agency. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison on March 4, 2010.
Posted: August 26, 2008
A federal grand jury in Arizona has charged a Mesa man with lying about alleged fundraising activities for the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF).
Akram Musa Abdallah, 54, a naturalized U.S. citizen of Palestinian origin, was indicted on August 19, 2008, for making a "false, fraudulent and fictitious material statement and representation" to FBI agents in January 2007 about his involvement in fund-raising activities for the HLF, a Texas-based Muslim charity accused of funneling over $12 million to individuals and organizations linked to Hamas.
The HLF case ended in a mistrial in October 2007 after a federal jury in Dallas, Texas, failed to come to a unanimous decision on most counts. Next month, five HLF defendants face a retrial on most of the 197 original counts.
Abdallah allegedly helped coordinate fundraising events for HLF in Phoenix between 1994 and 1997, according to the indictment.
Abdallah, who pleaded not guilty to the indictment, reportedly disappeared for about six months some time in 2006. In January 2007, the FBI raided Abdallah's house and left with two vans full of evidence.
Abdallah, who does not currently face any terrorism charges, faces a maximum sentence of eight years in prison if convicted.