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Son of Al Qaeda ice cream man in Lodi convicted on all terrorism counts - Umar Hayat faces 23 years in jail

April 25, 2006

Jury: Hamid Hayat Guilty on All Counts Written for the web by Elizabeth Bishop, Internet News Producer

A jury has convicted Hamid Hayat of all counts against him in his terrorism trial. Just hours earlier, a mistrial was declared in his father's case.

The six man, six woman jury was in its ninth day of deliberations, when at 3:20 this afternoon they sent a note to Judge Garland E. Burrell saying they had a unanimous verdict.

The 23-year-old Hayat was charged with providing material support to terrorists and three counts of lying to federal investigators. Hayat appeared to have little reaction as he listened to the verdict through an interpreter.

He could face up to 23 years in prison when he is sentenced.

Hayat's attorney, Wazhma Mojaddidi said both she and her client are stunned. "I believe that they are wrong in their decision. Hamid Hayat never attended a terrorist trsaining camp. This fight is definitely not over. There will be a motion for new trial and ultimately Hamid hayat will be proven innocent as he is."

Earlier today, at 10 a.m., a separate panel of jurors in the case of Hayat's father, Umer, sent in a note saying they were hopelessly deadlocked in their deliberations. The eight women and four men returned to court and forewoman Deborah Kiriu said the panel was deadlocked. Judge Burrell asked if it was reasonably possible for them to reach a verdict if they continued deliberating, and Kiriu said no.

The jurors then were asked individually if they were deadlocked, and they said yes. It was not immediately known how many jurors were in favor of a conviction and how many wanted an acquittal, however.

Prosecutors will have 30 days to decide whether to re-try Umer Hayat. A hearing will be held Friday in which attorney Johnny Griffin will ask the judge to release Hayat from custody.

Griffin said he is pleased his client was not convicted but disappointed they may need to go through another trial. He said the mistrial makes it clear juries want to see solid evidence against people accused of terrorism. "I think it sends a strong message to the government that if and when you bring these types of cases, make sure all your "i's" are dotted and your "t's" are crossed."

The 47-year-old Hayat was charged with lying to federal authorities about his knowledge of terrorist camps and that his son allegedly trained at such a camp in Pakistan. Yesterday the jury said it was deadlocked, but Burrell sent the panel back to try again.

The Hayats' trial began February 14. The case was sent to the juries April 14.

Jurors in the Umer Hayat case left the federal courthouse in Sacramento without talking to reporters, apparently not wanting to taint deliberations in the Hamid Hayat case.

To learn more about the Hayats' case, click on the links above to News10 archived stories.

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