An aerospace scientist pleaded not guilty in federal court in Sacramento to charges that he smuggled missile components to Egypt that authorities believe were to be used to build an advanced weapons system for use by Iraq against Iran. Abdelkader Helmy, 39, a U.S. citizen born in Egypt, has been held without bail since his arrest June 24 at his office at Aerojet Solid Propulsion Co. in suburban Sacramento. He is charged in a federal grand jury indictment with six counts of conspiracy, unlawful export of munitions and money-laundering, which carry a potential sentence of 95 years. Prosecutors say Helmy was the U.S. leader of a ring that smuggled high-tech carbon material to Egypt. The material is said to make missile nose cones and airplanes more heat resistant and invisible to radar and to boost speed and payload.
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