A Woodbridge resident is facing terrorism-related charges after he allegedly produced a violent jihadist video with the help of the son of a leader of a Pakistani group that the United States has deemed a terrorist organization.
Jubair Ahmad, 24, a native of Pakistan, was arraigned Friday in federal court in Alexandria on charges that he provided material support to the militant group known as Lashkar-i-Taiba and made false statements during a terrorism investigation.
The U.S. District Court has not yet assigned Ahmad an attorney. His family could not be reached for comment.
Federal authorities allege that Ahmad created the video in September 2010 on behalf of Lashkar-i-Taiba, which advocates jihad against enemies and is thought to be behind the high-profile 2008 attack in Mumbai, India, that left 166 dead.
The five-minute video, which was posted on YouTube, features images of group leader Hafiz Mohammed Saeed and jihadi martyrs, along with armored trucks exploding after being hit by makeshift bombs, according to the charges.
The words “jihad” and “mujaheddin” can be heard throughout the clip; authorities believe that the video was intended to help recruit jihadists.
Authorities say Ahmad consulted with a man, who was later identified as Hafiz Mohammed Saeed’s son, Talha, on the concept for the video, including what photos, videos and music to use. Authorities did not disclose how those communications occurred.
In October 2010, Talha Saeed contacted Ahmad and told him to revise the video, giving him specific instructions, according to charges. Ahmad allegedly revised the video, adding a graphic montage of images of dead bodies, a detainee at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and a naked detainee in a defensive position before U.S. soldiers.
In a later interview with FBI agents, Ahmad allegedly falsely denied any involvement in producing the revised video.
As a teen in Pakistan, Ahmad received religious training from Lashkar-i-Taiba and attended one of the group’s basic camps, which included weapons training, according to charges.
Ahmad and other family members moved to the United States in 2007; they obtained a visa because Ahmad’s father was related to a U.S. citizen, according to court documents.
The FBI began its investigation into Ahmad in 2009, after receiving information that Ahmad may have been associated with Lashkar-i-Taiba.
A bond hearing for Ahmad was set for Wednesday. If convicted, he faces up to 15 years in prison on the charge of material support and eight years in prison on the charge of making false statements.
Staff writer Del Quentin Wilber contributed to this report.