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Tag: terrorism

FBI Informant Paid $40,000+ to Help in Terrorism Conspiracy Case

fbi logo largeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

An informant who provided key information implicating friends in a terrorism conspiracy case was paid more than $40,000 by the FBI, the Star-Tribune reports, citing court documents. 

Defense attorneys said the payments undermine the credibility of the informant, code-named “Rover.”

“Most importantly of all, the informant has been paid in the most valuable currency of all — his freedom,” wrote attorney Andrew Birrell. “Despite lying under oath multiple times and having participated in the same conduct charged in the indictment, the informant has remained free.”

The defense attorneys want permission to interview the informant to determine whether he was induced by money to say the defendants broke the law.

The informant said the defendants planned a domestic attack.

Authorities: North Carolina Man Planned to Shoot Up FBI Because He Couldn’t Buy Gun

Walter Litteral

Walter Litteral

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

One of three men accused of building crude explosives and buying firearms to prepare for a violent confrontation with the federal government also wanted to shoot up the FBI after he was denied the ability to buy a semi-automatic rifle, the Charlotte Observer reports. 

The man was arrested, along with two others, and charged in federal court.

During brief testimony by an FBI special agent, Walter Litteral was accused of planning to drink a bottle of tequila before shooting up the FBI.

Litteral and others were afraid the U.S. government was planning to impose martial law after spotting military exercises in Gaston County in North Carolina.

Testimony was only given in Litteral’s case.

Facing Growing Threat over Homegrown Terrorists, FBI Tries New Approach

fbi logo largeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

As the FBI scrambles to handle an increase in potential homegrown terrorists, the bureau is taking a new approach that would favor counseling over jail, the Wall Street Journal reports. 

The bureau is struggling to keep pace with the thousands of Americans believed to be supporting the interests of ISIS.

Especially concerning is the proliferation of teenage suspects.

“Nobody wants to see a 15-year-old kid go to jail if they don’t have to,’’ said one official working on the effort.

But, the FBI official emphasized, criminal charges would still be pursued if the suspect becomes more dangerous.

Not everyone agrees with this approach.

“I get the principle, but there are a lot of potential problems with this, and I think it’s a wrong move,’’ said Peter Ahearn a former FBI counterterrorism agent. “I’m not saying it shouldn’t be done but it shouldn’t be done by the FBI. That’s not the mission.’’

William F. Sweeney, Jr., Named Special Agent in Charge of FBI’s Philadelphia Office

William Sweeney

William Sweeney

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

William F. Sweeney, Jr., who most recently served as special agent in charge of the Counterterrorism Division of the New York Field Office, has been named as the new special agent in charge of the Philadelphia Office, the FBI announced Monday.

FBI Director James B. Comey made the appointment.

Sweeney launched his career with the FBI in 1998 as a member of a public corruption squad in the Newark Field Office.

Since 2004, Sweeney has worked primarily on terrorism cases and was among members of a team that received the 2010 Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service and the National Intelligence Exceptional Service Medal.

Sweeney returned to Newark in October 2010 as assistant special agent in charge in October 2010. A year later, he took the helm at the National Security Branch within the division. He also served a sting as special assistant to the FBI’s deputy director at FBI Headquarters in Washington D.C.

Terrorism Threats in Alabama? It Can Happen Anywhere in Age of ISIS

ISIS flag

ISIS flag

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The attack on a military camp in Chattanooga was a stark reminder that not even America’s rural areas are safe from terrorist attacks.

It’s why every FBI field office nationwide has a joint terrorism task force, reports ABC 30.

To combat the threat in Alabama, Chris Hoffman, Supervisory Special Agent for the Birmingham Field Office, said no place in America is immune to an attack, and it takes vigilance to monitor and prevent an atrocity.

“The threat of terrorism is growing in the homeland, it’s an unfortunate time, but it’s a fact,” Hoffman said.

“There are ISIS investigations in every state in the United States,” Hoffman said. “Alabama has been touched by that, there’s been recent news stories about persons who have traveled from Alabama, females particularly to Syria. We also have domestic terrorism events. We have a long history here unfortunately.”

For more information on the Joint Terrorism Task Force, click here. 

Western New York Man Accused of Recruiting People to ISIS on Twitter

Arafat M. NagiBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A western New York man was arrested after federal authorities said he began recruiting people to join ISIS.

Arafat M. Nagi, 44, of Lackawanna, was charged Wednesday with trying to supply material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization, the New York Post reports. 

“This is yet another occasion when the worldwide fight against international terrorism has returned to western New York,” U.S. Attorney William Hochul Jr. said.

According to prosecutors, Nagi traveled to Syria and Yemen to join ISIS in 2012 and 2014 and even bought military gear on eBay.

The FBI said Nagi tried to recruit people on Twitter, where his account was flooded with Arabic tweets supporting ISIS.

FBI Accelerates Terrorism Arrests After ISIS Concerns But Risks Rushing Cases

ISIS flag

ISIS flag

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Fears of an ISIS-inspired attack has prompted the FBI to accelerate the arrests of terrorism suspects, not unlike after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Trouble is, many of the terrorism suspicions immediately following the 2001 attacks were unfounded, and some cases went nowhere, The New York Times reports. 

As a result, the FBI took a more patient approach, investigating suspects longer to gather more evidence.

Now that ISIS is a concern, the FBI has accelerated its arrest of suspected terrorists again.

The Times wrote:

In recent months, the F.B.I. has apprehended people suspected of being Islamic State sympathizers soon after they came onto the government’s radar. The F.B.I. has arrested and charged at least 25 people in the past three months with having ties to the Islamic State or other terrorist groups, compared with 20 people arrested over the previous year, according to court records.

Family Seeks Justice for Muslim Leader Killed by FBI in Michigan 5 Years Ago

Luqman Ameen Abdullah

Luqman Ameen Abdullah

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The family of a Muslim leader killed by the FBI in Dearborn, Mich., wants to know what happened and who shot him more than five years ago because relatives suspect a cover-up.

The Detroit Free Press reports that family of Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah, 53, of Detroit, has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear their case.

Abdullah was shot 20 times in October 2009 as part of an counterterrorism sting over what the FBI characterized as his extremist views and an illegal trafficking scheme.

The FBI has said it acted properly, but family and supporters believe he was a victim of an overzealous war on terrorism.

According to the official account, four FBI agents opened fire on Abdullah after he shot the bureau’s dog.

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