Entrapment/Manufactured Charges/Agent Provocateurs Prosecutions

  • Alleged Islamic State sympathizer arrested on terror charge

    Source: Associated Press. Sajmir Alimehmeti, a onetime plumbing assistant who has studied funeral services, was arrested Tuesday on charges that he tried to support the terror organization, Islamic State. Law enforcement undercover operatives posed over the last half year as men eager to support the Islamic State. Assistant Federal Defender Sylvie Levine said her client was not unusual, and that “in many ways, he’s just like any other 22-year-old, college-age student”. She noted there was no conspiracy charge and said he had not conversed with anyone who was not a member of law enforcement. “None of these statements appear to be followed by any action,” Levine said.

     
  • FBI is manufacturing terror plots against Jewish-Americans, driving divisions between Jews and Muslims

    Alternet (5/11): FBI Is Manufacturing Terror Plots Against Jewish-Americans, Driving Divisions Between Jews and Muslims
    Since 9/11, the FBI and NYPD have solved dozens of terror plots that its own agents and assets manufactured, including some against synagogues. Even if the plots were less than real, the foiled “attacks” have greatly impacted both the defendants and their alleged victims, spreading fear among Jewish-Americans and triggering panicked reports about heightened threat against Jews. It’s a startling image: a group of cops or FBI agents sit around an office table and plot the details of an “attack” on Jews. The idea sounds implausible, even conspiratorial. But the FBI has previously made calculated decisions before to exploit anti-Semitism as a means of managing perceived national security threats.

     
  • Terror trap: it’s easy for the FBI to bust extremist plans they help create

    Source: Houston Press. Jordan Furr and her family were in Bush Intercontinental Airport, just about to board the plane to Toronto when federal agents barreled down the jetway and changed their lives forever. As one agent threw her husband, Michael Wolfe, against the narrow tunnel’s steel wall and slapped on the cuffs, two other agents pulled the couple’s infant son out of Furr’s arms and grabbed the stroller holding the couple’s daughter. As far as Furr knew, she and Wolfe were going to Turkey to help Syrian refugees fleeing President Bashar al-Asaad’s brutal regime. But now, with a quick, sinking feeling, Furr knew what had happened. Her family was never meant to make the flight to Toronto and on to Turkey, where they were planning to stay, indefinitely and rent-free, with their wealthy friend Melissa.

     
  • Text messages with FBI informant reveal possible entrapment

    Source: Fox 2, Khalil Abu Rayyan was accused of being an ISIS sympathizer, and in a legal complaint the FBI says he told an informant he planned a mass shooting at a Detroit church. But his lawyer says the FBI baited the 21-year-old into making terrorist statements — and that he was simply trying to impress a woman he was falling for. Abu Rayyan promised to make the woman happy in this life and the next – that was just one of many text messages he sent. Turned out, however, that he was talking with someone who worked with the FBI. FOX 2 obtained some of the text messages. The young woman said she was depressed and was dead set on committing jihad, and was trying to convince Abu Rayyan to join her.

     
  • FBI honeypot ensnares Michigan man

    Source: The Intercept. Khalil Abu Rayyan was a lonely young man in Detroit, eager to find a wife. Jannah Bride claimed she was a 19-year-old Sunni Muslim whose husband was killed in an airstrike in Syria. The two struck up a romantic connection through online communications. Now, Rayyan, a 21-year-old Michigan man, is accused by federal prosecutors of supporting the Islamic State. Documents released Tuesday show, however, that Rayyan was motivated not by religious radicalism but by the desire to impress Bride, who said she wanted to be a martyr. Jannah Bride, not a real name, was in fact an FBI informant hired to communicate with Rayyan.

     
  • Trial for Florida man in alleged bomb plot off until July

    Source: Associated Press. Trial has been delayed several months for 24-year-old Harlem Suarez, who is accused of conspiring to detonate a bomb in a Florida Keys beach in a plot the FBI says was inspired by the Islamic State terror group. The FBI says Suarez told an informant he wanted to detonate a backpack bomb on a Key West beach. He was arrested in July after accepting an inert device from an FBI employee posing as an Islamic State member. Suarez has pleaded not guilty and is jailed without bail.

     
  • FBI agent testifies about undercover role in terror probe

    Source: Associated Press. A Los Angeles undercover FBI agent posing as an Islamic State sympathizer testified Wednesday at a terrorism trial that a U.S. Air Force veteran revealed that he expected to be arrested when he returned to the United States from a trip to the Middle East. The agent, identified only by the alias Talib Nassib, testified at the Brooklyn federal court trial of Tairod Pugh. On cross examination, defense lawyer Eric Creizman established that his client never told the agent he had any contact with the Islamic State or any plans to go to Syria. Creizman also had the agent acknowledge that Pugh never said he wanted to wage jihad or become a martyr.

     
  • U.S. veteran accused of trying to join ISIS uses free-speech defense

    Source: The Wall Street Journal. The government’s case against a U.S. Air Force veteran accused of trying to join Islamic State could hinge on whether jurors believe his interest in the terrorist group amounts to criminal activity or is instead protected by his free-speech rights. Tairod Pugh, a 48-year-old U.S. citizen, may have watched Islamic State propaganda, expressed offensive views and shown interest in the terrorist group, but “none of this is illegal,” his lawyer said to 12 jurors Monday during opening statements. “In this country, we don’t punish a person for his thoughts.”

     
  • Rasmea Odeh may get new trial, US appeals court rules

    Source: Voice of Detroit. A US court of appeals vacated the conviction of Palestinian American activist Rasmea Odeh on Thursday, returning her case to the district judge for a possible retrial. Her lawyers appealed her conviction on the basis that US District Judge Gershwin Drain had denied Odeh the opportunity to present a complete defense by prohibiting her from speaking about the torture and abuse she endured that led to her signing a false confession in 1969.

     
  • Judge blasts repeated delays in jailed man’s terrorism trial

    Source: Associated Press. A federal judge says she’s unhappy that a suburban Chicago terrorism suspect is still in jail awaiting trial nearly four years after his arrest in an FBI sting. Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman said at a hearing Tuesday that the delays in Adel Daoud’s case are “not justice”. Defense attorney Thomas Durkin says the government sting targeted someone “who wasn’t stable” and that “now he’s destabilized” further.