ATLANTA, April 1 (UPI)--Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin, the Muslim leader and former Black Panther charged with shooting two deputies last month, was investigated by the government for domestic terrorism and a series of murders, a newspaper reported Saturday.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution said that the Atlanta Police Department's intelligence squad identified an "inner circle" of eight Muslim men and compiled a list of 134 of Al-Amin's associates, most of them members of a mosque Al-Amin founded.

The newspaper said the FBI paid informants in the mosque as it investigated Al-Amin as a possible "domestic terrorist" after the bombing of the World Trade Center in 1992.

An Atlanta police intelligence squad profile said Al-Amin, a 1960s Black Panther leader known as H. Rap Brown, was suspected of stockpiling guns for a "war against the government," the newspaper said.

No charges resulted, the paper noted.

Al-Amin is being held in Montgomery County, Ala., pending extradition on charges that he murdered one deputy and wounded another in Atlanta on March 16.

Montgomery County Circuit Judge Charles Price on Friday set an April 21 hearing date on Georgia's attempt to extradite him. Al-Amin's attorney, J.L. Chestnut, has challenged the extradition papers and the fugitive warrant received from Georgia.

After his arrest in White Hall, Ala., Al-Amin said he was the victim of a "governmental conspiracy."

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, citing police investigators' reports, FBI documents and interviews, said Al-Amin was closely investigated from 1992 to 1997.

The newspaper said that Atlanta police suspected that Al-Amin and his followers were responsible for more than a dozen homicides in the neighborhood where Al-Amin lived and operated a one-room grocery store. It said that the FBI ended its investigations in February 1996 and that the Atlanta police investigation ended in August 1997.

Two of Al-Amin's associates are serving time in Georgia prisons for unrelated murders, the newspaper said. Al-Amin is being held under maximum security at the Montgomery County Detention Facility. Sheriff D.T. Marshall said he will remain in "maximum lockdown."

"He's a security risk," Marshall said. "I don't care what his lawyers say."

Al-Amin faces charges for murder, aggravated assault and aggravated battery in the fatal shooting of Fulton County Sheriff's Deputy Richard Kinchen and the wounding of his partner, Deputy Aldranon English.

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