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Iraqi sentenced in Germany

MUNICH, Germany, Jan. 12 (UPI) -- An Iraqi Kurd living in Germany in a landmark trial was sentenced Thursday to seven years in prison for being a member of a terrorist organization.

Amin Lokman Mohamed, 33, was the first person in a German court to be charged and convicted of membership of a foreign terrorist group, which was made a federal offence when Berlin introduced tougher anti-terror laws after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

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Mohamed was sentenced by a state court in Munich in southern Germany for being a member of the terrorist organization Ansar al-Islam, trafficking potential terrorists in and out of Germany and supporting the organization from Europe. Ansar al-Islam is believed to be linked to al-Qaida in Iraq.

Judge Bernd von Heintschel-Heinegg said in his sentence Mohamed was one of the group's leaders Germany. The seven-year term meets the prosecution's demand.

Germany in the past has been accused of being lax with its terrorism suspects.

Three more alleged Ansar al-Islam members face trial in Germany. They are accused of trying to kill the then-interim Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi while visiting Berlin in Dec. 2004.

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