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Tag: imam

Former British Imam Convicted in Terror Trial in New York

By Benamin Wiser
New York Times.

NEW YORK — The fiery British cleric who prosecutors said had “devoted his life to violent jihad” and had dispatched young men around the world to train and fight was convicted of 11 terrorism-related charges on Monday in Manhattan.

Prosecutors had charged that the cleric, Mostafa Kamel Mostafa, a former imam at the Finsbury Park mosque in North London, helped to orchestratethe violent 1998 kidnappings of 16 American, British and Australian tourists in Yemen; had tried to create a terrorist training camp in Bly, Ore.; and had supported terrorism by sending one of his followers to train with Al Qaeda in Afghanistan.

In the tourist abductions, four hostages were killed after their captors, a militant group allied with Mr. Mostafa, used them as shields during a Yemeni rescue operation. “He jumped at opportunities across the globe to support this violent jihad,” a prosecutor, Ian McGinley, told the jury in a closing argument on Wednesday.

To read the full story click here. 

Imam Gets Life in Plot to Blow Up JFK Airport

jfk airport

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Kareem Ibrahim, an Imam, will have to communicate to the person up above, behind bars, for the rest of his life.

Brooklyn U.S. District Judge Dora L. Irizarry on Friday sentenced Ibrahim to life in prison for conspiring to commit a terrorist attack at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens by being part of a plot to  explode fuel tanks and the fuel pipeline under the airport.

Authorities said Friday that Ibrahim and his coconspirators believed the attack would cause extensive damage to the airport and to the New York economy, as well as the loss of numerous lives.

“This case shows the government at its best in terms of protecting the security of this country,” Judge Irizarry said.

Ibrahim was convicted of multiple terrorism offenses in May 2011 after a four-week trial.

The evidence at trial established that Ibrahim, an Imam and leader of the Shiite Muslim community in Trinidad & Tobago, provided religious instruction and operational support to a group plotting to commit a terrorist attack at JFK Airport.

The plot originated with Russell Defreitas, a naturalized United States citizen from Guyana, who drew on his prior experience working at JFK Airport as a cargo handler to plan the attack on its fuel tanks and fuel pipeline, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a press release.

During cross-examination at trial, Ibrahim admitted that he advised the plotters to present a plot to revolutionary leaders in Iran and to use operatives ready to engage in suicide attacks at the airport.

Authorities recorded a conversation that had Ibrahim telling Defreitas that the attackers must be ready to “fight it out, kill who you could kill and go back to Allah.”

Russell Defreitas and Abdul Kadir were convicted of terrorism charges and sentenced to life in prison.

FBI Agents Who Fatally Shot Detroit Imam Weren’t Interviewed Until More than 6 Months Later

Luqman Ameen Abdullah

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The Detroit Free Press reports some puzzling matters surrounding the death of Detroit imam  Luqman Ameen Abdullah, who was shot and killed by four FBI agents during a raid in a suburban warehouse in Dearborn in October 2009.

The paper reports that the four FBI agents were not interviewed by investigators until more than six months later, in May and June, and that the FBI files “contain letters that show their attorney initially declining to let them be interviewed by Dearborn police. The FBI agent who fired eight shots at Abdullah was interviewed in June from Baghdad, Iraq.”

All the agents were cleared of wrongdoing in multiple investigations on the shooting, which stemmed from a raid involving a probe into stolen goods.

The paper also reported that Dearborn police, which investigated the shooting, “expressed concern about their inability at times to get evidence for their investigation of the fatal shooting, according to the records.

“Shortly after the shooting, the FBI removed the hard drives of surveillance video footage it made of the shootings with five covert cameras placed in the warehouse. Dearborn police ‘objected to removal of the hard drives,’ an FBI report said, but the FBI then later provided the department with copies for its investigation, which cleared the FBI of any wrongdoing.”

To read more click here.

Pathology Report Raises More Questions About FBI Fatal Shooting of a Detroit Imam

Luqman Ameen Abdullah

Luqman Ameen Abdullah

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The controversy over the FBI’s fatal shooting of a Detroit imam last October may not go away any time soon.

The Detroit Free Press reports that a noted pathologist Dr. Cyril Wecht, who did a pathology report at the request of the Michigan Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR),  has raised many questions, but did not conclude whether the shooting was justified.

For one, Wecht found the Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah was shot twice in the back, not once as the Wayne County Medical Examiner reported, the Free Press wrote. The FBI shot the imam 21 times after he shot and killed an FBI dog during a raid on a Dearborn warehouse where the imam was suspected of being involved in a stolen goods ring.

The pathologist also found that the imam had bites and claw marks from the FBI dog and that the dog fractured his jaw.

Read more »

NY Imam Pleads Guilty to Lying to FBI in Subway Plot: Will Have to Leave Country

new-york-mapBy Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A remorseful New York imam, as expected, pleaded guilty Thursday to lying to FBI agents in the subway bombing plot.

The Associated Press reported that a tearful Ahmad Afzali told the judge that he wanted to help authorities but lied under grilling by the FBI.

He had tipped off al Qaeda associate Najibullah Zazi that he was under surveillance by authorities in New York.  Zazi pleaded guilty to plotting to blow up the New York subway system.

AP said his guilty plea spares him serious jail time, but will force him to leave the country.

He also  told the judge  he was sorry for lying about his conversations with Zazi.

“In doing so, I failed to live up to my obligation to this country, my community, my family, and my religion,” he said, according to AP. “I am truly sorry.”

The plea agreement says that Afzali could get up to six months in jail and that he would have to leave the country within 90 days after serving his sentence.

To read more click here.

Ex-FBI Agent Says Shooting Detroit Imam 20 Times Was Justified

Greg Stejskal

Greg Stejskal

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Retired FBI agent Greg Stejskal, a columnist for ticklethewire.com, tells the Detroit News that he thinks agents acted appropriately when they fatally shot an imam 20 times during an October raid in Dearborn, Mi, after the imam shot and killed an FBI dog.

“Once you’ve made the decision to use deadly force, you fire until the threat is eliminated,” Stejskal told the News. He said he studied the medical examiner’s report and media reports and spoke to FBI agents.

Stejskal spent more than 20 years on the Detroit FBI’s SWAT and now teaches at the police academy at Washtenaw Community College.

Agents shot and killed Detroit imam in the warehouse raid that was part of a probe into stolen goods.

The News reported that Dawud Walid, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations of Michigan, “said he wants to wait and review the investigative reports of the shooting and have an independent pathologist review the medical examiner’s report.”

“The reality is that none of us were at the scene,” he told the News. “We really don’t know what happened.”

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Justice Dept. Conducting Routine Probe of FBI Fatal Shooting of Imam in Michigan

michigan11By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has launched a routine investigation into the fatal FBI shooting in Michigan of a Muslim imam in October, the Detroit News reported.

Rep. John Conyers (D-Mi), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, who had asked the Justice Department to probe the matter, announced the news at a press conference Tuesday.

The paper reported that Justice Department spokesman Alejandro Miyar confirmed the investigation, but said it would have happened regardless of Conyers’ request.

“The FBI’s inspection division conducted a review,” Miyar said, according to the Detroit News. “The civil rights division has received the FBI’s report and is now conducting an independent review of the shooting.”

An autopsy report on Monday showed Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah was shot 21 times during a raid on a Dearborn warehouse. The FBI was conducting a probe of the trafficking of stolen goods.

The FBI says that the imam opened fire first and shot an FBI dog before agents returned fire.

Read Autopsy Report

FBI Raid in Detroit Where Imam Died Raises Concerns About Informants in Mosques

The use of FBI informants in mosques is causing a lot of tension around the country between Muslims and the FBI. Here’s one of those instances.

mosqueBY NIRAJ WARIKOO
FREE PRESS STAFF WRITER

DETROIT — He called himself Jabril. Two years ago, a white man who claimed he was an ex-con and convert to Islam started attending a predominantly African-American mosque on a run-down street in Detroit.

He touted his Islamic ways while offering poor members of the mosque cash for odd jobs at an auto shop on the city’s west side. He told tales of sick family members and brought a young boy to the mosque who he said was his son.

Jabril soon became a brother in faith and a confidante of the mosque’s fiery leader, Luqman Ameen Abdullah, who was killed in a shootout during an Oct. 28 raid by FBI agents to arrest men suspected of dealing in stolen goods.

Members now believe Jabril was an FBI informant who infiltrated their mosque.

“He built up trust in the community,” said Omar Regan, 34, one of Abdullah’s sons.

For Full Story