Two co-defendants of a man who has convicted for an alleged plan of suicide bombing of the New York City subways pleaded not guilty on Thursday to conspiring in the plot.
The upgraded charges were filed after Afghan immigrant Najibullah Zazi surprisingly pleaded guilty on Monday to plotting the attack.
Defense lawyers for Medunjanin and Ahmedzay complained prosecutors and government officials were making unfair and sensational accusations against their clients while trying to prevent defense lawyers from speaking publicly about the case.
Medunjanin, of Bosnian origin, and Ahmedzay, of Afghan origin, previously had been charged with lesser offenses of interfering with the Zazi investigation.
Zazi, 25, and two of his former high school classmates from the New York City borough of Queens are accused of traveling to Pakistan together in 2008.
Adis Medunjanin and Zarein Ahmedzay were charged in federal court in Brooklyn with conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction, conspiracy to commit murder in a foreign country and receiving an alleged al Qaeda training. They pleaded not guilty through their defense lawyers.
Upon pleading guilty, Zazi admitted he planned to blow himself up on the subway. He is now cooperating with investigators.
A superseding indictment unsealed on Thursday effectively equated the charges against them with those against Zazi. All three face life in prison if convicted.
Zazi's father and a New York City imam also face lesser charges in connection with the case.
ReutersLast Mod: 25 Şubat 2010, 23:47