A Seattle mosque leader who has been accused of funneling money to terrorist groups -- allegations that angered his many supporters in the local East African community -- gave up his fight Thursday to stay in the United States.
An immigration judge ordered that Abrahim Sheikh Mohamed, who isn't charged with any terrorism-related crimes, be deported to Kenya.
Mohamed has been locked up since his arrest Nov. 14 on immigration violations, and nearly six months of confinement -- much of it in isolation -- weighed heavily on his decision to accept deportation, according to his lawyer, Hilary Han.
"He's lived in the United States for almost six years. He has many ties here, and this is a place where he has been able to be safe," Han said. "This was not an easy decision for him.". . .
Aziz Junejo, who hosts a local cable TV show on Islam, said it was "a very sad day" for the Muslim community. He said he has known Mohamed for several years and believes the man gave up his fight "to keep his dignity and respect."
"If one of our leaders was involved in terrorism, we wouldn't want him as a leader," Junejo said. "There's just no evidence of that."