US considers adding new charges in Afghan attack case
PESHAWAR (Pajhwok): New charges carrying the death penalty may be brought against an American citizen accused of supporting Al-Qaeda and aiding a suicide attack in Afghanistan, an official said on Thursday.
Based on evidence they had been collecting over the last few months, they were mulling over bringing charges over the killing of Afghan nationals in the 2009 bomb attack on the US base, said Assistant Attorney Zainab Ahmad.
She made the announcement as Muhanad Mahmoud al-Farekh pleaded not guilty in a New York court to charges that he played a role in helping prepare explosive devices used in the attack.
Prosecutors had obtained a search warrant for Farekh's DNA to see if it matched a sample recovered from the packing tape on one of the bombs, Zainab said: "We expect in a month or two we'll know what we can prove."
The announcement meant the US citizen could face potential death-eligible counts, said Seth Maher, Al Farekh's lawyer. He requested Judge Brian Cogan to limit prosecutors from continuing to expand the case.
On Wednesday, the federal court in New York charged the American with conspiring to set off a truck bomb outside the US military base in Afghanistan.
"Farekh, a citizen of the United States, allegedly turned his back on our country and tried to kill US soldiers in the course of executing their sworn duty to keep us safe," Attorney Robert L. Capers said.
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