Tag Archives: Masjid Al-Saaliheen

Man charged with attempted murder in hate crime outside Flushing mosque

| mhayes@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Maggie Hayes

A November hate crime case has been cracked and a Forest Hills man charged with attempted murder.

Late last year, Bashir Ahmad, a devout Muslim from Afghanistan, was attacked and repeatedly stabbed outside of his local mosque, Masjid Al-Saaliheen in Flushing. Bernhard Laufer was arrested and charged in connection with the incident.

“He hit me six times,” Ahmad said in November.

He said his attacker was yelling, “You’re a Muslim motherf—–, I’ll kill you.”

Ahmad was opening the mosque’s doors for morning prayers, as he had done every day for the past 12 years, when Laufer attacked.

“Crimes fueled by hate will not be tolerated here in Queens County, the most diverse county in the nation,” said District Attorney Richard A. Brown.

Ahmad said Laufer came up from behind him and began stabbing him on his shoulder and then on top of his head.

When Ahmad turned around and attempted to restrain him, Laufer bit Ahmad on his nose and stabbed him in his right leg. Ahmad also suffered a laceration just above his right eye and a slash to his right thumb. He tried to defend himself by biting Laufer’s finger.

Ahmad put his arms up to protect himself and Laufer continued to stab him in the body, causing bleeding, lacerations, bruising and swelling to his hands, head, legs and back, said Brown.

The 57-year-old victim said Laufer was not attacking him personally, but the Muslim faith as a whole.
“His problem [is not with me], his problem is [with] Muslims,” he alleged.

Laufer is charged with attempted second-degree murder as a hate crime, second-degree assault as a hate crime, attempted first-degree assault as a hate crime, attempted second-degree murder, second-degree assault and attempted first-degree assault.

If convicted, he faces a minimum of eight years and maximum of 25 years in prison.



Suspect threatens to kill man leaving Queens mosque

| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYPD

Police are looking for a suspect who threatened to kill a man as he left a Flushing mosque that was the site of another apparent hate crime last fall.

On Friday, April 12, around 8:00 p.m., the victim was leaving the 72-55 Kissena Boulevard mosque in his car when he noticed an unknown male driving a dark colored SUV following him, said police.

The vehicle followed the victim for several blocks. When he stopped at a traffic light at Union Turnpike and 199th Street, the suspect pulled over next to the victim, displayed a gun, threatened to kill him, then fled in an unknown direction.

During the incident the suspect also made anti-Muslim statements, according to police.

The suspect is described as a white male, 55 to 60 years old with dark hair and a mustache. He was last seen wearing a dark suit jacket with an emblem patch on the left pocket, and was possibly driving a Toyota SUV with an unknown New York license plate.

Friday’s incident was not the first time the mosque was the target of an alleged hate crime against Muslims.

On the early morning of November 18, 57-year-old Bashir Ahmad was opening up the Masjid Al-Saaliheen mosque when a man brutally attacked him, yelling “You’re a Muslim motherf—–, I’ll kill you.” Ahmad was stabbed several times and suffered other injuries.



Suspects attack man, 70, after asking if he is Muslim or Hindu

| brennison@queenscourier.com

corona assault

Six days after a Muslim was stabbed while opening his local mosque, another religion-based attack took place less than four miles away.

Two suspects approached a 70-year-old man in Corona on Saturday, November 24 at 5:20 a.m. and asked him if he was Muslim or Hindu before proceeding to assault him, according to police.

The victim sustained cuts and bruises to his face and was taken to Elmhurst Hospital. He is in stable condition.

Police described the suspects as Hispanic men in their late teens or early 20s with dark hair.

On Sunday, November 19, Masjid Al-Saaliheen was stabbed as he opened his mosque at 4:45 a.m. Police are investigating the assault as a hate crime.

Police descriptions of the suspects from the two attacks do not match.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.