FBI agents yesterday arrested a Portland city worker on allegations that he provided support to a suicide bomber who participated in a 2009 attack in Pakistan that killed about 30 people and injured another 300. Reaz Qadir Khan, a 48-year-old wastewater treatment plant operator, was arrested at his home and charged with one count of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, says an official. He pleaded not guilty yesterday in federal court, according to local media.
The arrest "brings home the reality that worldwide headlines can resonate right here in Portland," Mayor Charlie Hales said in a statement. If convicted, Khan faces a potential sentence of life in prison. The naturalized US citizen is accused of providing advice and financial help to Ali Jaleel, one of three people who carried out the attack at Pakistan's intelligence headquarters in Lahore. According to the indictment, Khan conspired with Jaleel and others starting in December 2005.