Tag Archives: plot

20-year-old Flushing man indicted for terrorism support


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Gavel 2

A 20-year-old Queens man was indicted this week for his support to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and for wielding a knife at a federal officer, officials announced.

A federal grand jury in Brooklyn handed down the indictment on Monday charging Munther Omar Saleh, reportedly of Flushing, with attempt and conspiracy to provide material support to ISIL, and assault and conspiracy to assault federal officers, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York.

The indictment accuses Saleh not only of conspiring to “provide material support to ISIL” but also of devising “a plan to conduct an attack in New York,” Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin said. Authorities believe he was preparing to specifically detonate a pressure cooker bomb in the New York metropolitan area on behalf of ISIL.

In a criminal complaint filed upon his June arrest, Saleh, a U.S. citizen who enrolled in a Queens college specializing in aeronautics in January, demonstrated his “violent jihadists beliefs” and support of ISIL through his online activities.

That online activity included tweets in support of recent terrorist attacks, translating propaganda materials to English for ISIL, and a May 7 email to himself that contained information about the construction of a pressure cooker bomb and searches for parts that could be used in an explosive device.

Authorities also believe that his activities revealed a “continuing effort to conduct a terrorist attack on behalf of ISIL, including by learning how to construct and detonate an explosive device,” according to court documents.

There were additionally searches of New York City landmarks and tourist attractions, surveillance cameras, weapons, ammunition, remote control helicopters and drones that piqued law enforcement interest.

Saleh and another individual were arrested on June 13 near 20th Avenue and the Whitestone Expressway after they allegedly charged at a federal officer while armed with knives.

The same indictment also charges Fareed Mumuni, a 21-year-old Staten Island resident and U.S. citizen, with attempt and conspiracy to provide material support to ISIL, assault and conspiracy to assault federal officers, and attempted murder of federal officers.

Authorities arrested Mumuni  just days after Saleh, reportedly believing they both conspired to provide support to ISIL and planned to carry out an attack on New York.

During the execution of a search warrant on Saleh’s home, he allegedly tried to repeatedly stab a FBI agent in the torso with a large kitchen knife, and was arrested. The agent was wearing body armor and reportedly suffered only minor injuries.

Both men’s arraignments are scheduled for Aug. 20. If convicted, Mumuni faces a maximum sentence of 85 years imprisonment and Saleh faces a maximum sentence of 65 years.

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Queens student busted for alleged terrorist support


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Scott Bintner/Property Week

A 20-year-old college student living in Queens is accused of trying to help a terrorist group after he was arrested in an alleged confrontation with law enforcement, according to federal court documents.

The criminal complaint, filed in the Eastern District of New York, charges Munther Omar Saleh with knowingly conspiring to provide material support and resources, including service and personnel, to the foreign terrorist organization Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

The U.S. citizen enrolled in January as a student at a college described as specializing in aeronautics located in the borough, and started coursework and laboratory work in electrical circuitry, court records said.

An investigation by the New York Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) revealed that Saleh, also known as “Abu Omar al Ramil” and “Abu Omar ar-Ramil,” “espouses violent jihadists beliefs and is a fervent supporter” of ISIL, the complaint said, which has been demonstrated by his online activities in 2014 and 2015.

That support allegedly consisted of trying to make an explosive device to set off in the New York City area on behalf of ISIL and offering them help by translating propaganda materials to English.

Saleh’s online activity included tweets in support of the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks, the beheading of Japanese journalist Kenji Goto by ISIL, the establishment of an ISIL military presence and Sharia law in New York City, and more recently the terrorist attack in Garland, Texas, according to court records.

A search of his computer and electronic surveillance of his online activity, including tweets, also revealed his translation work.

On March 15, a Port Authority police officer spotted Saleh walking toward the George Washington Bridge from the New Jersey side, court records said. He asked the officer for a ride across, and was told he could take a bus to the New York side of the bridge, but it was later determined that he never took the bus.

The following day, the same officer allegedly saw him walking on the bridge from New Jersey as Saleh was looking around repeatedly. The officer asked Saleh to accompany him back to the Port Authority office in Fort Lee, where he was later interviewed by a JTTF law enforcement officer.

During the interview, he reportedly said had gone to New Jersey to visit a friend and, when asked what he thought of ISIL, first said was not sure, but then expressed disapproval and stated he did not condone violence. He also consented to a computer search.

Authorities also believe that his activities revealed a “continuing effort to conduct a terrorist attack on behalf of ISIL, including by learning how to construct and detonate an explosive device,” according to the criminal complaint, and that his coursework in electrical circuitry could be “useful in the construction of an explosive device.”

Among his Internet activity that pointed to his alleged intent included a May 7 email to himself that contained information about the construction of a pressure cooker bomb and searches for parts that could be used in an explosive device.

On May 10, law enforcement members surveilling Saleh also observed him enter a spy store in Queens, which they believe sells products that could be used in a device.

There were also searches of New York City landmarks and tourist attractions, surveillance cameras, weapons, ammunition, remote control helicopters and drones that piqued law enforcement interest.

In the early morning of June 13, a co-conspirator was driving Saleh and another co-conspirator, both of whom were not identified, when law enforcement members, performing surveillance, allegedly observed the Jeep running stop signs and driving quickly through a parking lot with the vehicle’s lights off.

At about 4 a.m. while stopped at red light on 20th Avenue near the Whitestone Expressway, Saleh and the other passenger exited the car and took several steps toward the law enforcement vehicle before returning to the Jeep, court documents said. Moments later, the pair then got out of the car again and ran toward it, one going at each side. The car had to reverse to avoid them.

Saleh and the passenger were arrested at the scene and a search turned up a Smith & Wesson folding tactical knife in the waistband of the passenger’s pants. While they were detained, the two allegedly said they knew they were being followed for several days by several vehicles.

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Father Of Confessed Subway Bomb Plotter Awaits Sentencing


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Father Of Confessed Subway Bomb Plotter Awaits Sentencing

The father of confessed terror plotter Najibullah Zazi is set to be sentenced today in Brooklyn federal court. Mohammad Wali Zazi was accused of destroying evidence and lying to cover up his son’s plot to attack New York City’s subways in 2009. He was convicted last year of conspiracy and obstruction of justice. The 55-year-old maintains his innocence as he faces up to 40 years in prison. Zazi’s son pleaded guilty to terror charges nearly two years ago. Read More: NY1

 

Knicks’ newest star getting used to ‘Linsanity’

Knicks new point guard sensation Jeremy Lin admitted he was still getting used to the new attention he has been getting and credited media and fans for all the “Lin puns’’ going around the city. “I didn’t know you can turn Lin into so many things,’’ Lin said at today’s morning shootaround in Westchester. “We’ve never done it before. Me and my family were laughing last night. We underestimated how creative everybody can be.’’ Read More: New York Post

 

‘Violent’ Madonna stalker escapes from LA psych hospital

A man convicted of stalking Madonna in 1996 and who has “very violent tendencies” has escaped from a psychiatric hospital, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) said. Robert Dewey Hoskins, 54, who once scaled a wall at the star’s Hollywood home and threatened to cut her throat from ear to ear, walked out of hospital last Friday, an LAPD spokesman said. “Hoskins is a very psychotic man when not taking his medication and has very violent tendencies,” the LAPD statement, cited by the Los Angeles Times, said. Read More: New York Post

DA subpoenas Cashman financial records for extort clues

Manhattan prosecutors have subpoenaed Yankee general manger Brian Cashman’s bank records—which sources say include evidence that he coughed up as much as $20,000 to accused extortionist and purported mistress Louise Meanwell as far back as April, The Post has learned. Those alleged payments raise the question of whether Meanwell was shaking Cashman down for nearly 10 months — or whether the big bucks were legitimate gifts as part of an affair, as she claims. Read More: New York Post

 

$1M iBust in Chelsea

Police raided a Chelsea apartment yesterday and discovered an enormous cache of counterfeit Apple products and Beats by Dr. Dre headphones worth almost $1 million retail, cops said. Officers began staking out the building on West 28th Street near Seventh Avenue after an arrest last month when they saw a man leave the building with a fake iPhone that he later tried to sell on a Hell’s Kitchen street corner, cops said. The alleged swindler, Iaron Baskerville, was arrested and charged with possession of a forged instrument and fraudulent accounting. Read More: New York Post

Loony ’toon guilty

A Muslim extremist from Brooklyn pleaded guilty yesterday to making online threats against the creators of “South Park” because the TV show depicted the prophet Mohammed as a bear. Jesse Curtis Morton, 33, and another homegrown radical, Zachary Adam Chesser, 22, created revolutionmuslim.com to spread their messages of hate, officials said. They were outraged over an April 2010 “South Park” episode in which Tom Cruise and other celebrities previously lampooned by the Comedy Central show sue the town — but offer to drop the case if they can meet Mohammed and find out why he had so far been spared their ridicule. Read More: New York Post

 

Video clears man charged with trying to run down cop

A Brooklyn homeowner charged with racing his car toward a cop and making the officer jump out of the way to save his life was himself saved by a surveillance video that shows him calmly parking his car while the cop never budges. John Hockenjos, 55, was charged last Sunday with first-degree reckless endangerment after Officer Diego Palacios swore that the MTA engineer created a “grave risk of death” by driving his sedan “at high rate of speed into a driveway towards” the officer, according to the criminal complaint. Read More: New York Post

 

MTA worker scares off fiend raping woman in Bowery J train tunnel

An MTA worker walking along the tracks near a desolate lower Manhattan subway station scared off a violent sex attacker during a rape, police sources said. “That saved her life,” one of the sources said of the MTA worker’s light that caught the victim’s attention as she was being beaten and raped. The 36-year-old Asian woman saw the light and screamed, causing her attacker to flee. Police say Michael Torres, 29, targeted the 36-year-old Asian woman just after 1 a.m. Wednesday at the J train stop on the Bowery at Delancey St. Read More: Daily News

Queens’ Morning Roundup – 11/21/2011: NYC Man Arrested For Plotting To Kill U.S. Servicemen In Name Of Al-Qaeda


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

NYC Man Arrested For Plotting To Kill U.S. Servicemen In Name Of Al-Qaeda

A Dominican Republic native living in Washington Heights is under arrest for conspiring to build a bomb for terror purposes and possessing a weapon with the intent of waging a campaign of violence in the name of al-Qaeda, New York City authorities announced Sunday night. Jose Pimentel, 27, was arrested by New York City police on Saturday. Investigators say Pimentel had also planned to use a bomb to kill U.S. military personnel returning from active duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. He had also allegedly expressed a desire to bomb police patrol cars and postal facilities. Read More: NY1

 

Queens Driver Charged With DWI

A Queens driver is facing multiple charges including driving while intoxicated in connection with a Saturday crash on the Long Island Expressway. Police say 37-year-old John Gilette was driving a Jeep Wrangler onto the expressway Saturday morning near the 48th Street ramp in Maspeth when he swerved into a tractor trailer. Gilette’s car hit the right side cabin of the trailer before hitting a wall. Read More: NY1

Brawl chaos at Astoria club

A Queens nightclub was the scene of a bizarre string of violence that left four men injured early yesterday, authorities said. Several thugs first jumped a 23-year-old man at Amnesia on Steinway Street in Astoria, slashing his back, at about 4:15 a.m., cops said. As the thugs ran out of the hot spot, other clubgoers fled, too, authorities said. One of the alleged attackers, Orlando Santos, 18, was running when a car — not believed to be connected to the fight — struck him, dislocating his hip. Read More: New York Post

Former Mayor Giuliani Pushes For More Nuclear Energy Use In Astoria Forum

The Queens Chamber of Commerce hosted a forum in Astoria Friday with experts and former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, the keynote speaker, to discuss possibilities for clean and sustainable energy use, as the Bloomberg administration estimates the city will have one million more people by 2030. Watch the Video: NY1

Parents rip NYC schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott over ‘chaos’ at Queens high school

 

A Queens high school where the daughter of city schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott teaches gym is so disorganized that many students don’t know where their classes are or when they start. Some kids at Metropolitan High School in Forest Hills have gotten 10 different class schedules in 11 weeks of instruction, angry parents say. But this is all news to Walcott, because he refuses to talk shop with his daughter. Read More: Daily News