- Member of the New York-based al Qaeda cell – the Buffalo Six
- Pleaded guilty to providing support to a foreign terrorist organization
Born in December 1972, Sahim A. Alwan was a member of a cell of al Qaeda terrorists based in Lackawanna, New York (near Buffalo). The cell is commonly known as the Buffalo Six or Lackawanna Six. All of its members were recruited by Kamal Derwish and hailed from a community of approximately 3,000 Yemeni Muslim residents of Lackawanna.
A native-born citizen of the United States, in early 2001 Alwan traveled to Afghanistan where he visited the Al-Farooq al Qaeda training camp near Kandahar and was schooled in the use of weapons; he was present on one occasion when Osama bin Laden visited the camp and addressed its trainees.
The other members of the Lackawanna Six were Mukhtar Al-Bakri, Faysal Galab, Yahya A. Goba, Shafal Mosed and Yasein Taher. A suspected seventh cell member, Jaber Elbaneh (a U.S. citizen born in September 1966) remains at large and is believed to be hiding in Yemen.
In 2003 Alwan pleaded guilty to the charge of providing material support to the al Qaeda terrorist organization. He was sentenced to ten years in prison.