LONDON – A man detained in connection with the July 7 suicide bombings in London has been charged in a New York court with providing material support to terrorism in the United States, according to court documents unsealed Monday.
Haroon Rashid Aswat (search), 30, a British-born citizen of Indian descent, is accused of being part of a 1999-2000 plot to set up a terrorist training camp in Bly, Ore., according to a six-page complaint unsealed in federal court in Manhattan.
Aswat was taken into custody in Zambia last month, where he had been detained in connection to the bombings. British officials want to question him about 20 phone calls reportedly made on his South African cell phone to some of the four suicide bombers who killed 52 people in the London attack.
He was brought back to London over the weekend, and a judge on Monday ordered him to remain there until Thursday pending an extradition request from U.S. authorities.
According to the complaint in New York, Aswat and another man were dispatched to the United States in 1999. After arriving in New York, they traveled by bus to Seattle, where they allegedly conspired to set up the training camp.
A witness told U.S. investigators that Aswat once boasted that he had "been in a training camp in Afghanistan and he once saw Usama bin Laden (search)," according to court papers.
The London extradition hearing was based on accusations that Aswat tried to set up the Oregon camp to provide training in weapons, hand-to-hand combat and martial arts for people aiming to fight in Afghanistan.
Aswat's lawyer, Hossein Zahir, indicated his client would challenge the extradition.
"He wishes to stress that he has nothing to hide," Zahir told the court. "He denies any suggestion that he's a terrorist or engaged in any terrorist activity."