The trial of suspected al-Qaida operative Jose Padilla opened in Miami on Monday with federal prosecutors arguing the U.S. citizen and two co-defendants provided money, recruits and military equipment for nearly a decade to Islamic extremists involved in violence worldwide.

“The defendants were members of a secret organization, a terrorism support cell, based right here in South Florida,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Frazier told the jury in his opening statement. “The defendants took concrete steps to support and promote this violence.”