“Evidence in this case demonstrates that the defendants used the word Â“jihadÂ” to refer to armed combat.” These guys must be greasy Islamophobes. Don’t they know that jihad is just about paying your taxes and getting the kids to school? Ahmed Rehab, call your office!
“FBI: Four Local Men Arrested in Terrorist Plot to Kill Americans,” from KTLA News, November 19 (thanks to J.M.):
RIVERSIDE — Four Southern California men have been charged with plotting to join Al-Qaida and the Taliban in Afghanistan in order to kill Americans.
According to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in the Central District of California, the defendants conspired to provide material support to terrorists in preparation for or in carrying out: conspiracy to kill, kidnap, maim, or injure persons and damage property in a foreign country, killing and attempting to kill officers and employees of the United States, killing nationals of the United States, conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction outside the United States; and bombing places of public use and government facilities.
The defendants, listed below, are also known by alias identities listed in the criminal complaint.
Sohiel Omar Kabir, 34, a former resident of Pomona and naturalized United States citizen, born in Afghanistan.
Â• Ralph Deleon, 23, of Ontario, a lawful permanent resident alien, born in the Philippines.
Â• Miguel Alejandro Santana Vidriales (further described herein and in the criminal complaint as Â“SantanaÂ”), 21, of Upland, a lawful permanent resident, born in Mexico and whose application for citizenship is pending in the United States.
Â• Arifeen David Gojali, 21, of Riverside, a United States citizen.
The complaint, which was unsealed today during the defendantsÂ’ initial appearance in U.S. District Court, alleges that in 2010, Kabir introduced Deleon and Santana to radical and violent Islamic doctrine and various extremist material, including essays and lectures by now-deceased Al QaÂ’ida in the Arabian Peninsula leader, Anwar Al-Awlaqi.
Kabir traveled overseas in December 2011 and later to Afghanistan in July 2012, where he continued to communicate with Santana and DeLeon to arrange for their travel to join him in Afghanistan, according to the complaint.
The complaint alleges that Kabir told Santana and Deleon that he had made contacts with individuals who have connections to terrorist organizations.
Kabir further said that he would wait for their arrival before departing to a training location in Afghanistan and that, when they arrived, they would meet Â“the studentsÂ” and Â“the professors.Â”
According to the complaint, the term Â“studentsÂ” referred to the Taliban and the term Â“professorsÂ” referred to Al-QaÂ’ida.
The complaint alleges that Santana and Deleon told a confidential source working for the FBI, identified in the complaint as the Â“CS,Â” that they planned to travel to Afghanistan to engage in Â“violent jihad.Â”
In addition, the defendants described potential targets for violent attacks, including overseas American military personnel and bases, according to the complaint.
Evidence in this case demonstrates that the defendants used the word Â“jihadÂ” to refer to armed combat, according to the complaint….
For example, Santana stated that he had experience with firearms and that he wanted to become a sniper. Deleon stated he wanted to be on the front lines with a second choice of explosives. Both men also indicated they were willing to kill an enemy.
In September 2012, Deleon and Santana recruited defendant Gojali to join them and to travel overseas to commit violent jihad, as alleged in the complaint.
The complaint further alleges that defendants Santana, Deleon and Gojali made plans to join Kabir in Afghanistan to attend terrorist training, and that they arranged travel logistics, including flight arrangements and required documentation.
The complaint details the defendantsÂ’ activity in raising funds for their travel to Afghanistan and their discussion of various cover stories and code words they could use to conceal their true intentions when traveling abroad.
The complaint further alleges that Santana, Deleon, and Gojali conducted preliminary training in southern California at firearms and paintball facilities to prepare for terrorist training overseas.
Defendants Santana, Deleon and Gojali were apprehended on Friday without incident by members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force and had their initial appearance before a federal magistrate this afternoon in U.S. District Court in Riverside, California….