Wyoming Student Arrested in Texas on Charge of Aiding Terrorists

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A college student from Wyoming was arrested at a Texas border crossing after a roommate tipped authorities that he was aiding terrorists. Mark Robert Walker, 19, a native of Rochester, N.Y., had been chatting online about joining terrorist groups in Somalia. He was arrested Saturday as he crossed the Paso del Norte Bridge. The El Paso reported Walker wrote, “I hate the U.S. gov’t. I wish I could have been flying one of the planes on Sept. 11.”

Walker apparently fled to the border after his roommate in Laramie, Wyo., where Walker attended Wyoming Technical College, reported him to local police. FBI officials said Walker might have planned to fly to Somalia out of Mexico City. The FBI in El Paso characterized Walker as “a confused young man.” But the government was treating his case seriously. He was charged with providing material support to a terrorist group after acknowledging to federal agents that he was trying to send military equipment to a Somali group that the U.S. government has designated as a terrorist organization. He could face 15 years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines.

Link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A37993-2004Nov9.html

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