ALEXANDRIA, Va., Aug. 27 (UPI) -- A former teacher in Maryland has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for participating in an Islamist group seeking to expel India from Kashmir.
Ali Asad Chandia protested his innocence at a sentencing hearing and said his persecutors should be afraid of the day of judgment, the Washington Times reported.
Chandia was the last of 11 "Virginia jihadists" sentenced in the case. Others in the group received sentences that ranged from life to less than four years.
He was convicted of assisting Mohammed Ajmal Khan, one of the top military leaders of the group Lashkar-e-Taiba, by acquiring military equipment, sheltering him when he visited the United States and serving as his driver. Lashkar-e-Taiba was designated as a terrorist group in 2001.
Chandia was a third-grade teacher at Al-Huda School in College Park.
"Terrorist organizations like Lashkar-e-Taiba rely on a network of individuals to carry out their deadly operations," U.S. Attorney Chuck Rosenberg said. "Ali Asad Chandia was a member of that network for Lashkar-e-Taiba, and he will now spend a very long period of time in prison for providing material support in furtherance of its violent agenda."