I’m not sure it should properly be described as “missing” Somalis. Most of the young men were adults and able to travel without parental permission; seems that a travel agent claims not to have sold tickets to young Somali men lately when they showed up without a parent. While there was no information provided about their ages, if they were 18 or older, one might believe it’s improper for the travel agent to require a parent to appear before selling a ticket.
Third man pleads guilty in missing Somalis case
Somali man pleads guilty to lying to federal investigators
By Staff report, Star Tribune
A young Somali man from the Twin Cities pleaded guilty this afternoon in U.S. District Court to lying to federal agents investigating the recruitment of up to 20 Somali Americans over the past two years to fight with a known terrorist group in their war-torn homeland.
Kamal Said Hassan, 24, left Minneapolis for Somalia to train and fight with al-Shabaab, a Somali Islamist group that has been identified by the U.S. State Department as a terrorist organization with ties to al-Qaida.
Hassan returned to the U.S. last winter, apparently after having a change of heart about the mission, several Somali community sources told the Star Tribune in March.
Hassan is the third Somali American to plead guilty to charges stemming from the federal investigation. Two other men — Abdifatah Isse, of Seattle, and Salah Ahmed, of the Twin Cities — have pleaded guilty in recent months to providing material support to terror groups after returning to Somali and training with al-Shabaab.
In a 20-minute hearing before U.S. District Judge James Rosenbaum in Minneapolis today, Hassan admitted that lied to federal agents during a February interview about the extent of his involvement with al-Shabaab.
At that time, he told investigators that he had trained with al-Shabaab, but had left Somalia and traveled directly to Yemen after training. On Wednesday, he admitted that he also had participated in combat with al-Shabaab.
Hassan also said that he withheld the identities of some of his associates in Minnesota and Somalia.
Hassan was taken into custody immediately after the hearing.
Four other Somali men from the Twin Cities allegedly recruited by al-Shabaab over the past two years have been killed in Somalia since October 2008.