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Radical cleric killed by drone was twice arrested with prostitutes in San Diego

September 30, 2011 |  6:53 pm

Anwar Awlaki, the American-born cleric and jihadist killed by a U.S.-backed drone strike in Yemen, spent several years in San Diego but was gone before the Sept. 11 attacks.

He once told a reporter that his years in San Diego were "uneventful": a stint as a graduate student at San Diego State, some preaching at a small mosque in La Mesa, and a friendship with two students from Saudi Arabia who were later among the 9/11 hijackers.

What he didn't mention were two arrests and misdemeanor convictions for soliciting prostitutes along the infamous street-walker strip of El Cajon Boulevard.

In August 1996, Awlaki paid a $400 fine and was ordered to attend an AIDS awareness seminar. In April 1997, he paid a $240 fine and was sentenced to community service.


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Editorial: This killing is hardly something to celebrate

--Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: Anwar Awlaki. Credit: Site Intelligence Group