California Man Pleads Guilty to Smuggling Gun Parts to Syria

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) -

The chief executive of a California check-cashing business has pleaded guilty to helping smuggle rifle parts and other military equipment to rebels in his native Syria.

Rasheed Al Jijakli was arrested last year and charged in federal court with violating U.S. laws that prohibit exports to Syria. Prosecutors said he conspired with three others not charged in the indictment to export dozens of rifle scopes, laser-sighting devices and other tactical equipment to Syria.

City News Service reports that the 57-year-old man pleaded guilty Monday to violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. Sentencing is set for Dec. 3.

The indictment said Jijakli and others bought the goods in the U.S., flew with them to Turkey and then delivered them to rebel fighters in Syria between January 2012 and March 2013.