AbdulHameed’s defense lawyer Jeffrey Pittell made no immediate comment.
AbdulHameed ShehadehWritten by CP Editor Wednesday, 03 November 2010
AbdulHameed is a resident of Staten Island, New York , USA. He graduated from Tottenville High School and went on to study History in Hawaii. It is alleged that he is a ‘homegrown’ Islamist terrorist that attempted to join the Taliban and then the Iraqi insurgency via enlisting in the US Army.
AbdulHameed was arrested on Friday 22nd October 2010. However his arrest was only revealed the night of the 25th October 2010. This means that he remained in custody over that weekend, outside of public knowledge. More often-than-not in those types of circumstances, official assertions of 'confessions' follow, which are unsurprisingly also seen in AbdulHameed's case.
According to a Brooklyn federal complaint opened the night of the 25th October 2010 it is alleged that:
After an earlier federal complaint was lodged against AbdulHameed the FBI and NYPD conducted covert surveillance on his online activities. He is accused of advocating for jihad through posts in what are alleged to be ‘jihadist’ web forums, and also managing his own websites which linked back to Muslim speakers. However it was clear that he was doing nothing wrong as he was protected by the First Amendment.
In 2008 AbdulHameed is said to have bought a single ticket from Kennedy Airport to Islamabad Pakistan where he was travelling to a friend's wedding with the intention of then studying. He was flagged by Joint Terrorism Task Force and the NYPD and FBI spoke to him and allowed him to board the plane unhindered. Nevertheless Pakistan denied him entry.
The NYPD cyberintelligence unit say they went to a website, purportedly AbdulHameed’s, and ‘found’ a video of Osama bin Laden speaking. But subsequent detentions and arrests by security authorities did not consider this issue of relevance to any terrorism related offence.
AbdulHameed in late 2008 attempted to join the US Army at Times Square recruiting station to serve his country, travel and increase his job prospects. He was declined on the basis that he omitted mentioning his being turned back from Pakistan.
AbdulHameed then, in his pursuit of knowledge, unperturbed decided to go to Jordan. But like Pakistan was again denied entry. However the FBI questioned him on his return and even then found nothing amiss. He was questioned again in early 2009 by an agent and detective at his residence in Staten Island. They again found AbdulHameed an upstanding American citizen.
It is only when ‘witnesses’ ‘discovered’ by investigators are said to have alleged AbdulHameed spoke of ‘waging jihad’ in Pakistan and also against the US Military in Iraq, his troubles began. However nothing was done to detain him at this point.
AbdulHameed then went to Hawaii and is said to have entertained himself by paying $115 at a gun club. It is alleged he was en-route to Somalia. But the FBI ‘found’ a ‘witness’ that contradicted this and said that AbdulHameed wanted to go to Yemen. This ‘witness’ went so far as to say that AbdulHameed purported asked them to put compromising material on his computer to deflect any notion that investigators may have of him being an ‘Islamic fundamentalist’.
On the other hand it is counter-intuitively alleged that he also offered to become an informant. And that he spoke about radicalisation and mused about whether the Taliban and Al Qaeda are one or separate, to security agents.
AbdulHameed was arrested in Hawaii. It is alleged he had attempted, in the past, to travel to Somalia from there but was stopped because he is on a 'no fly' list.
The charge against AbdulHameed has nothing to do with any terrorist activity. But rather that he lied to the FBI about a 'failed attempt to join the Taliban'. He faces eight years in prison if labelled guilty. This, after what amounts to 2 years of harassment by American security services and their counterparts abroad.
AbdulHameed was ordered held without bail in Brooklyn Federal Court on the 2nd November 2010 by Magistrate Judge Ramon Reyes. Assistant U.S. Attorney James Loonam spoke for the government on the bail issue alleging that AbdulHameed is a 'flight risk' and 'a danger to the community'; the community that he sought to better through his pursuit of education far afield and to protect by joining US forces.
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Published in USA
- Al Qaeda
- New York
- Osama Bin Laden
- American citizen
- Joint Terrorism Task Force
- Times Square
- Staten Island
- Tottenville High School
- Islamist terrorist
- US Army
- Federal complaint
- Web forums
- First Amendment
- Kennedy Airport
- Recruiting station
- 'No fly' list
- Judge Ramon Reyes
- James Loonam
- Jeffrey Pittell
- AbdulHameed Shehadeh
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