Homemade Video Shows College Student Talking About Remote Explosives

Friday, November 23rd 2007, 9:38 am
By: News On 6

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) An Egyptian college student arrested after authorities said they found explosive chemicals in his car made a video suggesting that ``martyrdom'' can be avoided by using remote-controlled explosives, authorities said.

A court filing released earlier this week provided new details about the video, which is a key piece of evidence in the case against University of South Florida student Ahmed Abdellatif Sherif Mohamed. He faces federal explosives charges.

Mohamed said in his video that instead of carrying out ``martyrdom operations,'' people can use the remote-controlled explosives and save themselves for the real battles, according to prosecutors.

Mohamed and fellow USF student Youssef Samir Megahed were pulled over by police in August for a traffic stop in Goose Creek, South Carolina, about 15 miles northwest of Charleston and near a Navy weapons station.

Officers found explosives in their car and a laptop belonging to Mohamed that contained the video he made that demonstrates how to convert a remote-control toy car into a detonator for bombs, the FBI said.

The laptop was used to upload the video onto YouTube, the court filing said, and it contained a record of an e-mail sent to YouTube in July asking why the submitted video hadn't been posted on the Web site.

A folder labeled ``Bomb Shock'' in Mohamed's laptop contained files about ingredients for explosives, according to the filing by Assistant United States Attorney Jay Hoffer in Tampa.

Mohamed's attorney, John Fitzgibbons, declined to comment about the tape Thursday.

Messages left by phone and e-mail for Megahed's attorney, Adam Allen, were not immediately returned. He has contended that his client didn't know anything about the explosives in the trunk or the video on the laptop.

The men are in jail pending trial. They have pleaded not guilty. The students claimed they were on their way to a North Carolina beach and that they ended up in Goose Creek because they were looking for cheap gas.

A trial has been set December 3rd. If convicted, Mohamed faces up to 30 years in prison. Megahed could get up to 10 years.