Tag Archives: terrorism

Minnesota man faces terror cost for allegedly becoming a member of IS


A Minnesota man who’s accused of becoming a member of the Islamic State group in Syria has been returned to america to face terrorism expenses

Al-Madioum was lately in a jail in northern Syria with alleged IS fighters, based on information studies.

A search warrant affidavit unsealed in 2017 says Al-Madioum, who was 18 when he left for Syria, is a local of Morocco and a naturalized U.S. citizen. He started learning pc science at Normandale Neighborhood Faculty in Bloomington in 2014.

In June 2015, Al-Madioum and his household traveled to Morocco for a two-month trip to go to family. However on July 7, 2015, Al-Madioum skipped dinner saying he wasn’t feeling nicely, and the following day, he was gone. He left the whole lot behind aside from his cellphone and passport, based on the search warrant affidavit.

Al-Madioum’s household instructed the FBI that he referred to as them shortly after they returned to the U.S. and stated he was working in a hospital in Mosul, Iraq, which was then beneath IS management. However a member of the FBI’s joint terrorism job drive wrote within the affidavit that new recruits generally misinform family members about their precise places and actions in order to not trigger misery.

The FBI searched Al-Madioum’s dwelling in 2015 and located handwritten notes that indicated he had been planning to go to Syria, together with how he may route cash via numerous accounts, a rehearsed backstory in case he was stopped and various journey concepts if his plans to go to Istanbul had been thwarted. The notes additionally contained a sketch of a picture that seems on a flag related to IS, with the Arabic phrase for “allegiance” written subsequent to it.

Chatting with CBS Information from the Syrian jail in 2019, Al-Madioum stated he was recruited to IS via a Twitter contact and had watched propaganda movies that confirmed IS members serving to Muslims. He stated he by no means fought for the group however had hopes of turning into a health care provider.

“They gave me a clean examine to purchase no matter I wished,” stated Al-Madioum, who claimed to have misplaced his arm in a U.S. airstrike.

Al-Madioum is amongst a number of Minnesotans suspected of leaving the U.S. to affix the Islamic State group. In whole, roughly three dozen individuals have left Minnesota to affix militant teams in Somalia or Syria. In 2016, 9 Minnesota males had been sentenced on federal expenses of conspiring to affix the Islamic State group.


Observe Amy Forliti on Twitter: https://twitter.com/amyforliti


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White supremacists ahead of gun rally: FBI


GREENBELT, Md. — A former Canadian Armed Forces reservist and two other men who authorities say are linked to a violent white supremacist group were arrested Thursday, just days before they were believed to be headed to a pro-gun rally in Virginia’s capital.

The three men, members of The Base, were taken into custody on federal felony charges in Maryland and Delaware, the Justice Department said in a news release. One of the men had discussed traveling to Ukraine to fight alongside “nationalists” and compared the white supremacist group to al-Qaeda, a prosecutor said during the defendants’ initial court hearing.

A criminal complaint charges Canadian national Patrik Jordan Mathews, 27, and Brian Mark Lemley Jr., 33, of Elkton, Maryland, with transporting a firearm and ammunition with intent to commit a felony. William Garfield Bilbrough IV, 19, of Denton, Maryland, is charged with “transporting and harboring aliens.”

The three men were believed to be planning to attend a pro-gun rally scheduled for Monday in Richmond, according to a law enforcement official who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss an active investigation.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam on Wednesday declared a state of emergency and banned all types of weapons from the gun rally, citing reports that armed militia groups were planning to attend.

The Virginia Citizens Defense League and Gunowners of America filed a lawsuit Thursday seeking an injunction specifically against the ban on firearms. A judge upheld the ban, citing U.S. Supreme Court and other court rulings that found the Second Amendment right to bear arms is not unlimited.

In encrypted chat rooms, members of The Base have discussed committing acts of violence against blacks and Jews, ways to make improvised explosive devices, their military-style training camps and their desire to create a white “ethnostate,” according to an FBI agent’s affidavit.

Mathews and Lemley were arrested in Delaware and Bilbrough was arrested in Maryland. The men briefly appeared in court Thursday afternoon in Greenbelt, Maryland. A federal magistrate judge agreed to keep all three men jailed pending detention hearings, scheduled for Wednesday.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Windom showed the judge a photograph of Bilbrough participating in a military-style training camp with other members of The Base and said Bilbrough had also talked about traveling to Ukraine to fight alongside “nationalists.”

“He has personally compared The Base favorably to al-Qaeda,” Windom said. As federal agents moved in to arrest Lemley and Matthews on Thursday, the men smashed cellphones and tried to flush the pieces down a toilet, the prosecutor said.

Mathews illegally crossed the U.S. border near Minnesota in August and Bilbrough traveled 600 miles (965 kilometers) each way in a car to pick him up and bring him to Maryland, authorities said. Mathews, who appeared in court Thursday with a bushy beard, was a combat engineer in the Canadian Army Reserve. Lemley was a “cavalry scout” in the U.S. Army, court papers show.

U.S. and Canadian authorities had been searching for Mathews after his truck was found in September near the border between the two countries. The Canadian military’s intelligence unit was investigating Mathews for “possible racist extremist activities” for several months, according to the Canadian Department of National Defence.

Authorities say Lemley and Mathews built an assault rifle using several parts, including an upper-receiver that Lemley had ordered and shipped to a Maryland home. In December, the three men gathered at an apartment that Lemley and Mathews rented in Delaware, where they discussed The Base and its activities and members, passed around the assault file and tried to make the drug DMT, a hallucinogen, according to court papers.

A few days later, Lemley and Mathews bought 150 rounds of ammunition and paper shooting targets and Lemley was spotted by an FBI agent at a gun range in Maryland. Court papers say federal agents heard the gun firing in rapid succession. Authorities say Lemley later told Mathews: “Oh oops, it looks like I accidentally made a machine gun.”

Federal agents appeared to be tracking the men’s movements and set up a stationary camera near the gun range, which captured video of Mathews shooting the gun there on Jan. 5. Court documents say Lemley had also ordered 1,500 rounds of ammunition and that he and Mathews visited the gun range as recently as Saturday.

Prosecutors say Bilbrough recently drove to Alabama to stay with another member of The Base and had also visited Lemley and Mathews in Delaware, where the men had burned a Bible and other unidentifiable items in a wooded area.

Lawyers for Lemley and Mathews declined to comment on the charges. Bilbrough’s attorney, Robert Bonsib, said he was “underwhelmed” by a prosecutor’s arguments for keeping his client detained. Bilbrough was the only one of the three men not facing a firearms-related charge.

“I think this 19-year-old man should be released,” Bonsib told reporters after the hearing. Two of Bilbrough’s relatives attended the court hearing but declined to be interviewed.

The Anti-Defamation League said members of The Base and other white supremacist groups have frequently posted online messages advocating for “accelerationism,” a fringe philosophy in which far-right extremists “have assigned to their desire to hasten the collapse of society as we know it.”

In recent months, FBI agents have arrested several members of a different far-right extremist group, the neo-Nazi Atomwaffen Division. Atomwaffen has been linked to several killings, including the 2017 shooting deaths of two men at an apartment in Tampa, Florida.


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At 9/11 memorial, new recognition for a longer-term toll


The Sept. 11 memorial at ground zero has been evolving as the 18th anniversary of the attacks approaches.

This year, when nearly 3,000 victims’ names are read aloud there Wednesday, a half-dozen stacks of stone will quietly salute an untold number of people who aren’t on that list.

The granite slabs were installed on the memorial plaza this spring . They recognize an initially unseen toll of the 2001 terror attacks: firefighters, police and others who died or fell ill after exposure to toxins unleashed in the wreckage.

Caryn Pfeifer’s husband, firefighter Ray Pfeifer, died in 2017 of cancer. It developed after he spent months searching the rubble for remains.

She says the new 9/11 Memorial Glade gives families like hers a place to “think about everybody.”


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Notre Dame: Environmental teams warn towards lead air pollution


Environmental teams and certainly one of France’s largest labor unions known as Monday for stronger measures to make sure cleanup work at fire-ravaged Notre Dame Cathedral doesn’t expose employees and close by residents to unsafe ranges of lead.

The Paris regional administration suspended the job of cleansing up the famed Paris cathedral final month beneath stress from labor inspectors involved about well being dangers from the tons of lead that burned within the April hearth.

The administration deliberate to renew the work this week with stricter decontamination procedures and gear “to forestall any launch of polluting components to the skin.”

However representatives from environmental teams and the CGT union stated they do not suppose the security measures go far sufficient. They requested for a frequently up to date chart displaying the extent of lead within the air.

Labor and environmental teams are additionally pushing for the creation of a medical heart to watch the well being standing of firefighters, employees and residents.

Lots of of tons of lead that was in Notre Dame’s spire and roof melted in the course of the hearth, which got here near destroying the cathedral.

Lead ranges stay elevated at some spots inside Notre Dame and within the soil of the adjoining park and forecourt, in line with the Paris regional well being company. These areas have been closed to the general public since April 15

Throughout a information convention Monday, the environmental activists and union officers known as for a containment defend to be constructed over Notre Dame to maintain extra lead from being launched into the air.

“For the effectivity of the decontamination measures inside the space, it’s completely crucial that the location is confined”, Annie Thebaud-Mony, co-founder of well being and atmosphere group Henri Pezerat, stated.

Notre Dame rector Patrick Chauvet acknowledged that lead can escape into the environment from the large gap within the cathedral’s roof however dominated out constructing a containment defend earlier than the cleanup work resumes.

Anne Souyris, the deputy Paris mayor answerable for well being points, stated up to date lead degree info is about for launch on Tuesday.

Paris authorities ordered new checks of colleges and day care facilities within the Notre Dame neighborhood and really helpful blood checks for kids beneath age 7 and pregnant ladies who dwell close by.

Youngsters are particularly weak to well being issues from lead poisoning and publicity.


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