ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A prominent Muslim activist who said he participated in a Libyan plot to assassinate Saudi Arabia's crown prince pleaded guilty Friday to engaging in illegal business deals with Libya.
Abdurahman Alamoudi (search), 52, was not charged in the assassination plot. But a 20-page statement of facts spells out many elements in an elaborate killing scheme that had Alamoudi serving as a go-between for high-ranking Libyan government officials and Saudi dissidents.
The plot was exposed before it could be carried out.
According to the document, which remained partly sealed, Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi (search) wanted Crown Prince Abdullah (search) killed after a March 2003 Arab League Summit where the two called each other names. At one point in the summit, Abdullah wagged a finger at Gaddafi and said, "Your lies precede you, while the grave is ahead of you."
Within two weeks, Alamoudi, who had in the past frequently traveled illegally to meet Libyan government officials, was summoned to a meeting in Tripoli and told that Gaddafi wanted to punish Saudi leaders.
The unidentified Libyan officials wanted Alamoudi to introduce them to Saudi dissidents who could create "headaches" for the Saudi regime, authorities said.
Alamoudi was not initially told that the ultimate plan was to assassinate Abdullah, learning of it only several months later from an unidentified "high-ranking Libyan government official," the papers said.
Alamoudi's lawyer, Stanley Cohen, said the government conceded that his client's role was minimal, and he called Alamoudi, a founder of the American Muslim Council and related American Muslim Foundation, "extraordinarily remorseful."
"What hurts the most is that there are those people who will seek to manipulate this plea into an attack on the entire Muslim community," Cohen said.
A little over a year ago, a Libyan official paid Alamoudi $250,000. Court documents indicate Alamoudi used some of the cash for himself and transferred the rest to two others for personal use.
Later that year, Alamoudi received more cash from Libya and provided some to the Saudi dissidents. Alamoudi was carrying $340,000 of that cash in England when it was seized by airport authorities there during a routine baggage search. Alamoudi was questioned about the money but not arrested.
He returned to Libya and was arrested Sept. 28 when he returned to the United States.
He faces a maximum sentence of 23 years in prison when he is sentenced Oct. 15.
Alamoudi visited the White House during the Clinton administration and participated in a group discussion with George W. Bush during the 2000 presidential campaign.