Credit-card probe at Fawaz Damra's mosque

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Life keeps getting stickier for Cleveland muslims. According to The Plain Dealer, two of them have reportedly been fleeced by two of their fellow worshippers. The two men accused of running a huge credit-card scam, Rashied Hassan Mohammad and Mukesh Chokshi, are now being sued by their alleged victims.

The deal seemed simple: Hand over your credit cards to Mohammad and Chokshi, who would use them to buy cooking oil, spices and other commodities at bulk prices. In exchange, they would not only pay your monthly credit-card bills but give you several hundred dollars a month for taking the risk.

Granted, you'd have to be pretty gullible to hand over your credit card to two schmoes, but there's a third person who's being accused of facilitating the fleecing of victims who might otherwise have resisted: Imam Fawaz Damra.

Yes, that Fawaz Damra.

It might have seemed like a shaky proposition -- building a business on high-interest cash advances -- but Damra said it would work, according to three people familiar with the arrangement. Because he is the mosque's prayer leader and the community's adviser on Islamic law, many of his parishioners believed him, they said.

This ought to make Damra's June 15th trial even more interesting.

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