Associated Press: Appeals Court Next Stop As Jury Awards $156 Million In Terrorism Case

Three Islamic groups and an alleged fund-raiser for the Palestinian militant group Hamas are expected to appeal the $156 million in damages they are being ordered to pay in the death of an American teenager at the hands of Hamas gunmen.

It was a fresh blow to a group of Islamic charities and others who have seen their assets frozen and in some cases found themselves under federal indictment for allegedly funding terrorist groups as part of the post-Sept. 11 war on terrorism.

Chicago Muslims raised the possibility that the verdict could have a negative effect on contributions to legitimate Islamic charities.

“People are hesitating to give to the needy and the poor, which is a fundamental issue in the Islamic religion,” said Yaser Tabbara, executive director of the Chicago chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations.

copyright © 2004,