Three Sri Lankans charged by US for deaths of 5 Americans in Easter blasts

ECONOMYNEXT – The United States has charged three Sri Lankans being held in Sri Lanka with aiding a terrorist group in the attacks on Easter Sunday in the death of five US citizens, the US Attorney’s office announced.

The men are Mohamed Naufar, Mohamed Anwar Mohamed Riskan and Ahamed Milhan Hayathu Mohamed and were charged last month in federal court in Los Angeles with conspiracy and providing and attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization, the statement said.

The men have no California connection, but the FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Force that headed the investigation is based in Los Angeles, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.

The three men were linked to the National Towheed Jamaat that carried out the Easter Sunday suicide blasts that killed 268 people in three churches and three hotels.

Naufar is accused of leading propaganda efforts for the group that called itself “ISIS in Sri Lanka,” recruited others to join the group and led military-type training, authorities said.

Riskan is accused of helping make explosive devices used in the attacks and Mohamed is accused of killing a police officer in Sri Lanka to obtain a weapon, shot a suspected informant and scouted a location for a separate terrorist attack, prosecutors said.

“This case clearly demonstrates that the United States will take decisive action to ensure terrorists face justice when they target Americans anywhere in the world,” Nick Hanna, U.S. attorney for the Central District of California, Associated Press reported.
(Colombo, January 9, 2021)

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