No bail for suspect who sought al-Qaida

Nov. 27, 2012 at 7:10 AM   |   Comments

RIVERSIDE, Calif., Nov. 27 (UPI) -- A California man arrested on suspicion of plotting to join al-Qaida will be held without bail until his trial, a federal judge ruled.

In her ruling Monday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Sheri Pym said she believed Arifeen Gojali, 21, of Riverside posed too much of a flight risk and was a danger to the community, based on allegations made by federal investigators, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.

John Aquilina, Gojali's attorney, said during the hearing neither his client nor his family had the financial wherewithal to post bail.

"If we can't get over that hurdle, what's the point?" Aquilina said outside of the courtroom.

Gojali and three other men from the Inland Empire area of Southern California are accused of plotting to join al-Qaida or the Taliban in Afghanistan to attack U.S. or coalition forces.

Gojali and two other suspects were arrested during a vehicle stop in Chino Nov. 16, the day after they booked a flight from Mexico to Afghanistan. A fourth suspect and alleged ringleader was arrested the next day.

Other defense attorneys in the case have criticized the government's case because it relies on evidence gathered by a paid confidential informant who wore a wire, the Times said.

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