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Story by Ralph Metcalf - The Oregon Herald
Published on Thursday December 2, 2010 - 8:05 AM
 
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PORTLAND, Oregon – Mohamed Osman Mohamud entered a plea of Not-Guilty Monday in federal court here in Portland.The indictment charged him with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. He was arrested Friday evening near the crowded Pioneer Courthouse Square, after a months-long FBI sting operation.

Dozens of people — many of them women wearing head scarves — arrived at the federal court building where Mohamud was scheduled for a court hearing. One of them, Mujahid El-Naser, said he attended middle school in Portland with Mohamud and that he didn't believe his friend would have gotten involved in the plot without encouragement of the FBI.

Mohamud was arrested after he and an agent drove into downtown Portland in a white van that carried six 55-gallon drums with detonation cords and plastic caps, but all of them were inert. Authorities said they allowed the plot to proceed to obtain evidence to charge the suspect.