July 28, 2005

Muslims attempt to raise$500,000 bail for imam

TOLEDO (OH)
Toledo Blade

By CLYDE HUGHES
BLADE STAFF WRITER

The Muslim Community Center is attempting to raise $500,000 for bail for its imam who was convicted earlier this month in the rape of a local girl four years ago.

Yusuf Lateef, of the community center, said members believe that Imam Hisham El-Amin, 53, has been falsely accused of raping the daughter of one of the centerís members at various times from June 1, 2000, to Aug. 23, 2001.

El-Amin has been the imam of the Muslim Community Center, 1125 Hamilton St., for at least the last 25 years, members said.

A Lucas County Common Pleas Court jury thought differently. El-Aminís trial ended July with convictions on two counts of rape.
El-Amin was indicted on the charges Oct. 10, 2003. The case dragged along after a change of defense attorneys and judges.

Prosecutors said the jury relied on the believability of the 16-year-old victim, who was 12 when the incidents occurred, to find El-Amin guilty.

El-Amin, who is being held in the county jail, will be sentenced Aug. 5 by Judge Gary Cook.

Posted by kshaw at July 28, 2005 04:37 PM