» This Story:Read +| Comments

Get Local Alerts on Your Mobile Device

Text "LOCAL" to 98999 to get breaking news, traffic and weather alerts.

Judge Upholds Case Against Ex-Manager of Islamic Center

You need to download or upgrade your Flash Player @ Adobe.com

The Washington Post

Discussion Policy
Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from the site. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed. Finally, we will take steps to block users who violate any of our posting standards, terms of use or privacy policies or any other policies governing this site. Please review the full rules governing commentaries and discussions. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, May 7, 2009; 2:43 PM

A federal judge today refused to throw out charges that the former business manager of the Islamic Center of Washington embezzled $430,000 from the mosque during a six-year period.

This Story

Defense attorneys for Farzad Darui, the former manager, had asked Chief U.S. District Judge Royce C. Lamberth to toss the case or block testimony by a key witness. They alleged that the witness, the center's director and religious leader, lied to investigators and on the witness stand during Darui's trial last year.

The trial ended in a hung jury, and prosecutors are seeking to retry him on mail fraud, money laundering and theft charges.

Darui alleged that he had been authorized by the center's director, Abdullah Khouj, to pay off debts of two women and to pay informants for tips about the mosque's security. But Khouj testified that Darui had stolen the money without his knowledge.

Lamberth ruled that defense lawyers failed to prove the government had engaged in misconduct by allowing Khouj to lie on the witness stand.

Darui's "spotty allegations do not provide grounds for such an extraordinary action," Lamberth wrote.

Noting that prosecutors' conduct "has at times not been exemplary," the judge added that their conduct "has not, in the court's opinion, sunk" to the point where the case should be tossed. Lamberth also refused to block Khouj from testifying during a retrial.

» This Story:Read +| Comments

More in the Metro Section

Local Blog Directory

Find a Local Blog

Plug into the region's blogs, by location or area of interest.

Virginia Politics

Blog: Va. Politics

Here's a place to help you keep up with Virginia's overcaffeinated political culture.

D.C. Taxi Fares

D.C. Taxi Fares

Compare estimated zoned and metered D.C. taxi fares with this interactive calculator.

Facebook Twitter RSS
© 2009 The Washington Post Company