Craig Baxam seeks charges dropped

WASHINGTON (AP) - A former Army soldier accused of trying to provide support to a terrorist organization in Somalia after he left the military has asked a court to dismiss the case against him, saying he never had any contact with the group.

A lawyer for Maryland resident Craig Baxam wrote in a motion filed Monday in federal court that convicting her client would require him to have coordinated with the terrorist group al-Shabab. Baxam's lawyer wrote that Baxam never contacted or attempted to contact al-Shabab and never pledged loyalty to any person or organization affiliated with the group.

Baxam served in the Army from 2007 to 2011 and converted to Islam shortly before leaving. He is accused of leaving the U.S. for Somalia in late 2011 with the intention of joining al-Shabab.