Entries in Jihad (5)


American Rapping Jihadi Added to FBI’s Most Wanted

FBI(WASHINGTON) -- An Alabama-born rapping jihadi fighting half a world away is among the new entries on the FBI’s infamous Most Wanted List, the bureau announced Wednesday.

Omar Hammami, also known as Abu Mansoor al-Amriki, has been fighting with the Somalia-based terror group al-Shabaab since 2006. Hammami has allegedly been a propagandist for the al Qaeda-linked group and has released several rap songs praising jihad against the West.

Hammami was originally indicted in the U.S. on terrorism-related charges in 2007 and faced additional charges in a superseding indictment in 2009.

Douglas Astralaga, the Supervisory Special Agent for the FBI in Mobile, Ala., told ABC News he couldn’t comment on exactly why Hammami was being added to the list now, but said there is an ongoing investigation into Hammami’s alleged terrorist activities and, after a lengthy review, information against him “met the criteria” for being added to the list.

Earlier this year Hammami said he feared for his life, but it wasn’t the American government he was worried about. In a video posted online, Hammami said he suspected his fellow militants might turn their guns on him due to ideological “differences.”

He has apparently survived that tiff, but his terror group has been on the losing end of several recent battles in Somalia. In September, al-Shabaab was pushed out of its last urban stronghold in Kismayo by African troops.

In a recent autobiography written by Hammami and posted online, he describes a daily fear of drone strikes and jokes that the drones are “racist” – they prefer to target white people in Somalia.

He may have reason to worry. In late September 2011, a high-profile al Qeada recruiter, Anwar al-Awlaki, and an al Qaeda propagandist, Samir Khan, were killed in a CIA drone strike. Both were American citizens.

In addition to Hammami, the FBI added Raddulan Sahiron, a suspected leader of the Filipino terror group Abu Sayyaf, to the list. The bureau said it is also seeking information about Shayk Aminullah, an alleged recruiter for al Qaeda and the Pakistani-based terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Teen Charged With Trying to Blow Up Chicago Bar After Undercover FBI Operation

Comstock/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- An 18-year-old man was arrested by undercover FBI agents after he allegedly tried to detonate what he believed to be a car bomb outside a bar in downtown Chicago, prosecutors said Saturday.

Adel Daoud, a U.S. citizen from Hillside, Ill., was taken into custody Friday evening after he allegedly tried to set off a phony car bomb given to him by an undercover FBI agent posing as a terrorist.

Officials are not releasing the name of the downtown Chicago bar that was allegedly targeted by Daoud, but said the bar was never in any danger.

The undercover operation began in May when two undercover FBI agents contacted the teen in response to material he had allegedly posted online regarding violent jihad and the killing of Americans.

From late May until mid-June, the undercover agents corresponded with Daoud. During those communications, he affirmed his interest in engaging in a violent jihad in the United States or abroad, according to an affidavit.

In June, one of the undercover agents introduced a purported cousin, who was identified as an operational terrorist living in New York, to Daoud.

During this time, Daoud allegedly made a list of 29 potential targets, including military recruiting centers, bars, malls and Chicago tourist attractions.

The 18-year-old researched and kept a close watch on a target for the attack, which would be carried out with an explosive device provided by the undercover agent he met with, according to the affidavit.

At 7:15 p.m. on Friday, the teen and the agent drove to their target in downtown Chicago. During the car ride, Daoud led a prayer that the attack succeed, "kill many people" and "cause destruction," the U.S. Attorney's Office said in a statement.

The pair entered a parking lot where the fake car bomb was set up inside of a Jeep. Daoud drove the Jeep out of the lot and parked it in front of the bar he had allegedly identified as his target, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Daoud and the agent walked to an alley one block away where the agent witnessed the 18-year-old press the triggering mechanism, attempting to detonate the device, prosecutors said. He was then taken into custody.

Daoud faces charges of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction and attempting to damage and destroy a building by means of an explosive.

The teen had an initial court appearance Saturday. A detention and preliminary hearing is scheduled for Monday at 3 p.m. in federal court.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Feds: New York Man Arrested on Way to Jihad

Medioimages/Photodisc(NEW YORK) -- Law enforcement officials Friday announced terrorism charges against a New York resident who was arrested at JFK airport in September while allegedly attempting to travel to Pakistan and join a jihadist cell there.

Agron Hasbajrami, a legal U.S. resident and citizen of Albania, was picked up Sept. 6 after he allegedly exchanged emails with a contact in Pakistan who authorities said admitted he was involved in violent military operations that had killed American soldiers.

Hasbajrami told the contact he wanted to travel abroad to "marry with girls in paradise," according to an indictment unsealed today. Hasbajrami also allegedly sent more than $1,000 to Pakistan "to support his contact's terrorist efforts," said a statement released by New York prosecutors.

Hasbajrami was nabbed in JFK before boarding a flight to Turkey. He was carrying a tent, boots and cold-weather gear, prosecutors said. When investigators searched his home, they said they found a note that read, "Do not wait for invasion, the time is martyrdom time."

"The vigilance of law enforcement has resulted in the capture of another alleged aspiring terrorist bent on traveling overseas for violent jihad," U.S. attorney Loretta Lynch said in a statement. "We will spare no effort in stopping terrorists before they strike."

If convicted, Hasbajrami could face up to 15 years in prison.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Muslim Community Outraged over Informant Scandal

Photo Courtesy - Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(IRVINE, Calif.) -- Relations between the FBI and a Muslim community in California have grown strained after a trained informant, Craig Monteilh, infiltrated a mosque, according to a Washington Post report. An FBI leader had reportedly told the mosque while Monteilh was undercover, that no such surveillance would ever happen. Monteilh eventually lost his job as informant when the shocked members of the mosque issued a restraining order against him due to his violent, jihadist talk, which was intended to draw out potential terrorists. The Washington Post reports that he is now suing the FBI and revealing details about the agency's controversial methods.

Monteilh, who acted under the pseudonym Farouk al-Aziz, has described his covert behavior as essentially entrapment. The Muslim community is angered since the government has frequently stated that it tries not to target ethnicities or religious groups in their anti-terrorist operations.

Monteilh embroiled another worshipper, Ahmadullah Sais Niazi, at the same Irvine mosque, in a jihadist plot, which resulted in Niazi's arrest. Charges, however, were dropped after Monteilh went to the press with information about his involvement.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Suspected Printer Bomber Is Fanatical Jihadist

Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The man who authorities believe prepared the printer bombs and dispatched the so-called "underwear bomber" on Christmas Day in an attempt to blow up a plane over Detroit may be a recent entrant in the headlines, but he has had a trail of chilling attempts.

Ibrihim Asiri is a 28-year-old Saudi native, an expert in explosives and chemicals -- and a fanatical jihadist.

Just months before allegedly building the explosives that Christmas Day bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab wore on a U.S.-bound from Amsterdam, officials say he packed explosives into a body cavity of his own 23-year-old brother Abdullah, sending him on a suicide mission. The target was the head of the Saudi intelligence chief, Prince bin Nayef.

"They believe that such a martyrdom operation will be rewarded in the afterlife," said Bruce Riedel, a former CIA official and senior fellow at the Brookings Institution told ABC News in an interview Monday.

"A martyr who killed Prince Muhammad bin Nayef would have been up there in the pantheon of al Qaeda martyrs," Riedel said.

The younger Asiri posed as a repentant jihadist who had information for Prince bin Nayef, but when he entered the room, he tripped. The bomb exploded prematurely, blowing Asiri to bits ... but sparing the Prince.

Ibrahim Asiri is the son of a former Saudi soldier. The father told a Saudi newspaper his son was radicalized years ago, and fled the county for Yemen. In Yemen, Asiri trained in secret camps, working to perfect his bomb making, and managing to elude capture.

It was Prince bin Nayef -- still the Saudi intelligence chief -- who called U.S. authorities last week to tell them about the latest plot the Saudis had uncovered, providing the Americans with the packages' tracking numbers.

Yemen has been a safe haven and stronghold of al Qaeda since the late 1990s, Riedel told ABC News in an earlier interview this year.

It is a very attractive arena for al Qaeda, because it is one of the most lawless, ungoverned spaces in the entire world, he said. In addition, Osama Bin Laden's family is originally from the southwestern part of Yemen.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio 

ABC News Radio