LONDON — Identical twin brothers from Somalia have been sentenced to three years in prison in Britain for raising money to fund terrorism abroad, officials said Wednesday.
Mohammed Shabir Ali and Mohammed Shafiq Ali, 25, were sentenced at London’s Central Criminal Court, a day after reaching a plea bargain.
They were part of a ‘‘network of support’’ for their 29-year-old brother, Mohammed Shamim Ali, who was undergoing terrorist training in Somalia, prosecutor Timothy Cray said. They were recorded speaking by telephone with their brother about posing as charity collectors, Cray said.
The twins were originally charged with assisting others to commit acts of terror abroad. That carries a maximum sentence of life in prison, compared with a maximum of 14 years for the fund-raising charge.
After their April arrests, the brothers also were charged with possessing a manual titled ‘‘44 Ways to Support Jihad,’’ written by senior Al Qaeda recruiter Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed last year by a US drone attack in Yemen. That charge was set aside.
Police were unable to determine how much money the twins sent to their brother, but the pair pleaded guilty to the charge based on the premise that it was about $4,700.
‘‘It is accepted by the prosecution that they sent funds primarily out of concern for their brother’s physical and mental health, although it is important to note this was in the context of his planned involvement in terrorism,’’ said Judge Adrian Fulford. ‘‘It is clear that they knew that their brother needed financial assistance and why.’’
Fulford said he took into account that the men had shown responsibility by testifying at a trial earlier this year that helped to convict four men of murder.