Sabirhan Hasanoff, 34, and Wesam El-Hanafi, 33, were busted in Dubai earlier this month and charged with offering Al Qaeda their allegiance and offers of high-tech support.
Casio is the official watch–and explosive device–of Islamic terrorists. Casios are used as timers in bombs. Those equipped with altermeteres can double as butane lighters. That’s why wearing a Casio is cited as evidence against 8 of the terrorist prisoners at Guantanamo Bay.
Federal Magistrate Judge James Francis denied a bid to have Sabirhan Hasanoff released to house arrest, citing his technical savvy, conversations about the terror network on the Internet and his purchase of watches prized by terrorist groups. “Were this an individual with minimal skills who perhaps bought digital watches from a street vendor for the benefit of Al Qaeda, it might be a different story,” Francis said.
Anthony Ricco, a lawyer for the Australian-born Hasanoff, had argued he should remain free on $2 million bond and kept under house arrest.
Prosecutors also revealed that Hasanoff, a Baruch College graduate, traveled to Syria, Turkey and Yemen and once went to Iraq in hopes of waging jihad. He pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to provide support to Al Qaeda. “The defendant made the decision to join Al Qaeda after being turned on to Al Qaeda in this very city where he used to live,” Assistant U.S. Attorney John Cronan said.
Cronan said Hasanoff performed “real and tangible work” for Al Qaeda, tasks which allegedly included buying digital watches. “Casio digital watches are very valued by Al Qaeda,” Cronan said. “They are part of Al Qaeda’s tradecraft because they can be used as timing devices.”
Hasanoff, a father of two, allegedly used a code while conversing online with El-Hanafi, which included “safari” as a substitute for jihad and “hospitalized” as a term for being in prison. NY DAILY NEWS