Al-Qaida suspect held in Philly pleads not guilty in federal court

 March 13, 2010 file photo of Algerian national Ali Charaf Damache in Dublin, Ireland. An al-Qaida suspect linked to a plot to kill a Swedish cartoonist has been extradited to Philadelphia to be tried in civilian court rather than face trial at Guantanamo Bay. (Niall Carson/File, PA via AP)

March 13, 2010 file photo of Algerian national Ali Charaf Damache in Dublin, Ireland. An al-Qaida suspect linked to a plot to kill a Swedish cartoonist has been extradited to Philadelphia to be tried in civilian court rather than face trial at Guantanamo Bay. (Niall Carson/File, PA via AP)

An al-Qaida suspect linked to a plot to kill a Swedish cartoonist has pleaded not guilty to terrorism charges.

A lawyer for 52-year-old Ali Charaf Damache, of Algeria, says his client appeared in federal court Monday and pleaded not guilty to charges he was involved in a terror cell that wanted to kill a cartoonist who depicted the Prophet Muhammad as a dog.

Records show Damache is being held in a federal detention center in Philadelphia.

Prosecutors say the Ireland-based terror cell included a Pennsylvania woman known as Jihad Jane.

Damache is known as The Black Flag. He was brought from Spain to Philadelphia last month to be tried in a civilian court despite President Donald Trump’s promise to send terror suspects to the military prison at Guantanamo Bay.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.