US seeks 15 years for Fla. imam in Taliban case

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Associated Press

Posted on August 21, 2013 at 11:03 AM

Updated Wednesday, Aug 21 at 11:04 AM

MIAMI (AP) — Federal prosecutors in South Florida are seeking a 15-year prison sentence for an elderly Muslim cleric convicted of financially supporting the Pakistani Taliban.

The sentence was recommended in court papers filed Wednesday for 78-year-old Hafiz Khan, who was imam at a Miami mosque. Khan was convicted in March of four terrorism support charges. Trial evidence showed Khan funneled thousands of dollars to the Pakistani Taliban, which has carried out numerous violent attacks against U.S. and Pakistani targets.

Khan's lawyers are seeking a more lenient sentence, in part because of his poor health. Khan also testified that the estimated $50,000 he sent overseas was for family, friends and charity, not terrorism. Khan operated a religious school in Pakistan's Swat Valley.

A Miami federal judge is scheduled to sentence Khan on Friday.

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