Islamic Activist With Ashland Ties Now Free

A former Ashland arborist whose conviction on money laundering charges linked to an Islamic charity has been overturned is now officially a free man. The Medford Mail Tribune reported Wednesday a judge signed papers last week freeing Pete Seda from home confinement. He was released from a halfway house Aug. 23, when the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned his conviction. After more than two years behind bars, he's living in Portland and working at a delicatessen. A jury convicted Seda of tax evasion and conspiracy. Prosecutors said he helped smuggle more than $150,000 to Islamic terrorists in Chechnya. He said it was humanitarian aid. The appeals court said the defense was given incomplete versions of classified documents. Prosecutors haven't said whether they'll seek a new trial.

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