world harvest market

Hamoodi Family / HelpHamoodi.org

It’s been less than one week since Shakir Hamoodi – a Columbia businessman – had to leave his community and start his 3-year prison sentence. 

Hamoodi Family / HelpHamoodi.org

Columbia Businessman Shakir Hamoodi is expected to begin a 3 year federal prison sentence Tuesday afternoon.

Shakir’s son Husam was working at World Harvest Market in Columbia Monday afternoon – Shakir’s last day before he began his prison sentence.

Husam said around 50 people had stopped by the store throughout the day to say goodbye to Shakir.

He also said Shakir has been very busy these past few days. He compared his father’s prison sentence to it being like someone saying ‘you have three months to live.’

Lukas Udstuen / KBIA

More than 100 people crowded into Columbia's Rock Bridge Christian Church last night to celebrate and say goodbye to Columbia businessman Shakir Hamoodi. Next week, Hamoodi is expected to begin a three year federal prison sentence. He earlier pled guilty to sending about $200,000 to family, friends and charities in his native Iraq from 1991 to 2003. Many of the speakers at the event echoed a similar theme: A conflict between what is legal and what is just. Investigators found no evidence that Hamoodi was aiding the Iraqi government through the financial contributions.

A Columbia grocer convicted of violating federal sanctions against Iraq by sending money overseas is preparing to start a three-year prison sentence later this month.