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Bond Denied For Iraqi-Born Man In Houston Charged With Attempting To Support ISIS

Omar Al Hardan was arrested on terror charges last week and appeared in federal court on Wednesday.

A federal judge in Houston has denied bond for a man arrested on terror charges last week.

Omar Al Hardan, 24, pleaded not guilty to all three charges against him. He’s accused of attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State, along with immigration-related charges.

Al Hardan is an Iraqi refugee. Authorities say he was encouraged by a Syrian refugee in California, who has been linked to ISIS.

The judge heard testimony from Hermann Wittliff, a special agent with the Department of Homeland Security. Wittliff says Al Hardan told a confidential source about plans to bomb a U.S. military base and two shopping malls in Houston. He says agents were alerted in part by Al Hardan’s purchase of electronic materials online, things which Wittliff says could be used to build explosives.

The defense argued that those materials are also used in several common devices, such as garage openers, and did not necessarily point to plans to carry out an attack.

The judge has ordered Al Hardan to be detained without bond.

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Tomeka Weatherspoon

Tomeka Weatherspoon

Senior Producer

Tomeka Weatherspoon is an Emmy-award winning producer. She produces segments, the weekly television program Arts InSight, the short film showcase The Territory and a forthcoming digital series on innovation. Originally from the Midwest, Tomeka studied convergence journalism from the world’s first journalism school at the University of Missouri. She has...

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