He was videotaping the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. From the Baltimore Sun, :
A man described in a federal indictment as a “high-ranking” Hamas operative was arrested in Maryland on Friday videotaping the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, authorities acknowledged last night.
Ismael Selim Elbarasse of Annandale, Va., long suspected by authorities of having financial ties to the Palestinian terrorist group, was taken into custody as a “material witness” in a Chicago terrorism case, according to Maryland’s U.S. attorney’s office.
Elbarasse made an initial appearance in Baltimore’s federal courthouse yesterday before U.S. District Magistrate Judge Paul W. Grimm.
In the indictment by a federal grand jury in Chicago, unsealed and announced on Friday, Elbarasse is described as a “co-conspirator” in a 15-year racketeering conspiracy in the United States and abroad to illegally finance terrorist activities in Israel.
Elbarasse was not indicted, but court documents allege that he and defendant Mousa Mohammed Abu Marzook – considered one of the highest-ranking Hamas leaders internationally – shared a Virginia bank account that was used to launder hundreds of thousands of dollars for Hamas.
Abu Marzook resides in Syria and is considered a fugitive from justice, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago. The other two defendants charged in the indictment are Muhammad Hamid Khalil Salah of suburban Chicago and Abdelhaleem Hasan Abdelraziq Ashqar of Fairfax County, Va.