ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Eight men have been sentenced on racketeering and related charges for buying and selling goods illegally and funneling money to the Palestinian territories.
Federal prosecutors announced the sentences Thursday for the so-called Hamed Organization.
Prosecutors say the men were involved in bank fraud, bought and resold stolen property and contraband cigarettes, and committed other crimes out of five St. Louis-area convenience stores.
The criminal activity was led by 34-year-old Bassam Hisham Hamed. There was no evidence the money supported terrorist activities. Hamed's attorney says it went to relatives for medical purposes.
All eight men pleaded guilty in November.
Sentences ranged from six months of house arrest or work release to probation. Three of the men were fined $5,000 each.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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