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Militant Islam Monitor > Articles > Boca Imam who raised funds for suicide bomber families testifies at Al Arian trial that he didnt join PIJ because he was member of other Jihad group

Boca Imam who raised funds for suicide bomber families testifies at Al Arian trial that he didnt join PIJ because he was member of other Jihad group

Muneer Arafat's former mosque in Sarasota raised money for martyrs families - hosted Al Arian -Al Najjar -Hussam Jubara
June 9, 2005

MIM: The new Imam of the Islamic Center of Boca Raton, Muneer Arafat, revealed in court that he declined Al Arian's invitation to join Palestinian Islamic Jihad because he was a member of a different group ! Which begs the question as to why Muneer Arafat's former mosque - the Islamic Society of Sarasota and Brandenton -hosted Al Arian, and the his now deported brother in law Mazen Al Najjar if Arafat had the ideological differences with the PIJ as he claimed in court .Given the fact that Al Arian's lawyer read a litany of Arafat's false statements to authorities and documented lies, one must surmise that Arafat's claim of non membership in the PIJ is truth as he sees it. His response to Al Arian attorney William Moffitt is a classic of Islamist dissembling.

Under cross-examination by Al-Arian's attorney, William Moffitt, Arafat admitting lying in the past on resumes, job applications and a voter registration form. He has falsely claimed to be an American citizen, and was deported at one point for overstaying his visa. He also acknowledged he was detained immigration officials in 2002, is no longer working at the Sarasota mosque and that he and Al-Arian had a dispute in recent years.

Arafat also testified that the government has paid him a total of $35,000 since 2003 to cooperate with them, although it was not made clear the kind of cases in which he was involved. He denied being paid for cooperating in the Al-Arian case but said he asked the government to help his wife get a work permit.

"There are people who lie worse than that," Arafat told Moffitt as the attorney was chronicling his deceptions through the years

http://www.bradenton.com/mld/bradenton/11854963.htm

MIM: The ISSB also hosted Hussam Jubara, who is listed as one of the registered agents on some of Al Arian's 'businesses'. Jubara ,a professor at the University of Central Florida, was jailed and ordered to be deported in 2003. Jubara also wrote academic papers together with Al Arian and FAU professor Bassem Alhalabi, who is a cofounder and board member of the Islamic Center of Boca Raton.

Arafat's claim that he rejected Al Arian's attempts to recruit him into his PIJ terrorist group appear even more questionable in light of the fact that his mosque, the Islamic Society of Sarasota and Brandenton ,actively raised money for 'Al Aqsa martyrs families'.

A notice to their congregants states that they had raised '$4,000 for the families of the martyrs of Al Aqsa and that a brother would be bring the money to the West Bank'. The connection of Al Arian, and Al Najjar to the ISSB raises the possiblility that the 'martyrs families' receiving the money from Arafat's mosque were those who had carried out suicide bombings on behalf of the PIJ.

MIM: Investigative journalist Joe Kaufman writes that :

"...ISSB was also active in raising funds for these families. In its January 2001 edition of its monthly newsletter THE FAITH, under the title 'Aqsa Victims (2),' it is written: "The second payment of donations for Aqsa victims were sent [sic] the martyrs families and needy in the West Bank in Palestine. Alhamdullah we managed to send $4,000 by one of our dedicated brothers."

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For more on Muneer Arafat see : Imam for hire : From Bradenton/Sarasota to the Islamic Center of Boca Raton

http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/135

Cleric Testifies in Al Arian Trial

By MICHAEL FECHTER
mfechter@tampatrib.com


http://info.mgnetwork.com/printthispage.cgi?url=http%3A//news.tbo.com/news/MGBWHK2HR9E.html&oaspagename=www.tbo.com/news/story.htm&image=tbologo80x60.jpg

TAMPA - A Muslim cleric testified Thursday that he rejected Sami Al-Arian's invitation to join a Palestinian Islamic Jihad faction at one of Al-Arian's charity conferences in 1988.

Muneer Arafat said he already was aligned with a separate Jihad faction and did not respect the one Al-Arian represented. It marked the first direct testimony about the fired University of South Florida professor's alleged work on behalf of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, a terrorist organization responsible for more than 100 deaths in Israel and the occupied territories.

Arafat was part of a faction run by a sheik named Asa'ad Tamimi, who once served as imam of Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque, a holy site for Muslims. Al-Arian, Arafat testified, invited him to join a breakaway faction run by Fathi Shiqaqi. That faction was more violent and encouraged attacks against civilians, Arafat said.

He said he resented the fact that people living in comfort in Tampa, sending their children to good schools, were wiling to send other people's children to die in suicide attacks. U.S. District Judge James Moody struck the comment because it wasn't relevant to the question asked.

Defense attorney William Moffitt attacked Arafat's credibility during his cross examination. Arafat admitted that he lied repeatedly on job applications, illegally registered to vote and has been paid $35,000 by the government for work on a number of cases.

Al-Arian, Sameeh Hammoudeh, Hatim Naji Fariz and Ghassan Ballut are charged in a 53-count indictment alleging racketeering, conspiracy and material support to terrorists. They could face life in prison if convicted.

This story can be found at: http://news.tbo.com/news/MGBWHK2HR9E.html

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SARASOTA MOSQUE RAISES MONEY FOR FAMILIES OF SUICIDE BOMBERS

IMAM OF BOCA MOSQUE NAMED AS WITNESS IN THE
TRIAL AGAINST SAMI AL-ARIAN

http://www.jihadwatch.org/archives/006576.php

A Florida jihad update from Americans Against Hate:

(Coral Springs, FL) Opening statements for the trial against Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) leader Sami Al-Arian took place last Monday, June 6th. Al-Arian and three of his associates are accused of using two non-profit groups and a children's school to funnel money to PIJ for use in suicide missions in Israel.

On the government witness list for the trial is Muneer Arafat, currently the Imam of the Islamic Center of Boca Raton (ICBR). ICBR recently made national headlines when one of its congregants, Rafiq Abdus Sabir, was caught plotting to go overseas and aid members of Al-Qaeda. In addition, one of ICBR's current Directors, Bassem Alhalabi, was a research assistant for Al-Arian and published materials with Al-Arian at the University of South Florida (USF).

Before arriving in Boca Raton, Muneer Arafat was the Imam of the Islamic Society of Sarasota and Bradenton (ISSB) mosque. The mosque is located an hour south of the Islamic Academy of Florida (IAF), one of the institutions that Al-Arian was using to funnel money to PIJ.

ISSB featured repeated guest appearances by Al-Arian colleagues Mazen Al-Najjar and Hussam Jubara. Al-Najjar, who was a Director of IAF, was deported from the United States in August of 2002. Jubara, who co-founded the Islamic Concern Project (ICP) with Al-Arian, plead guilty in August of 2003 to lying on immigration forms.

Al-Arian, himself, was a guest at ISSB, in May of 2001. At this time, Al-Arian was actively raising funds for the families of suicide bombers.

ISSB was also active in raising funds for these families. In its January 2001 edition of its monthly newsletter THE FAITH, under the title 'Aqsa Victims (2),' it is written: "The second payment of donations for Aqsa victims were sent [sic] the martyrs families and needy in the West Bank in Palestine. Alhamdullah we managed to send $4,000 by one of our dedicated brothers."

Joe Kaufman, Chairman of Americans Against Hate, stated, "Given the fact that Al-Arian's colleagues were heavily involved with ISSB, and given the fact that ISSB was raising money for the families of martyrs, it is imperative that law enforcement focus much of its efforts on ISSB."



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