Terror Suspect Led Typical Suburban Life

But Boyd fought in Afghanistan, said 'good Muslims' waged jihad
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 29, 2009 5:32 AM CDT
Daniel Boyd has been arrested for conspiring with terrorists. He believes that Muslims should not be photographed and is said to have a long beard now.   (AP Photo/City County Bureau of Identification)
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(Newser) – The arrest of construction worker Daniel Boyd and his sons for conspiring to support terrorists came as a complete shock to their neighbors in North Carolina, who describe the 39-year-old father as a friendly gardener and fisherman. But Boyd has followed an uncommon path. After converting to Islam in the 1980s, he traveled to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets and was then convicted of bank robbery by an Islamic court in Pakistan—although the verdict was overturned on appeal.

Boyd returned to the US shortly afterward, marrying his high school sweetheart and setting up a construction business. But he broke with his mosque because of his strict interpretations of Islamic law, and in recent years he held prayer services at his home where he encouraged others to wage violent jihad. That has stunned locals, one of whom told the Washington Post about the family: "They were just normal American kids and a normal American father."