FBI: Islamic State sympathiser charged in backpack bomb plot

2015-07-29 08:02

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Miami - A man described by the FBI as an Islamic State sympathizer who hoped to mount attacks on U.S. soil was charged Tuesday with plotting to detonate a nail-filled backpack bomb on a Florida beach.

A criminal complaint unsealed on Tuesday charges 23-year-old Harlem Suarez with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction in the US Authorities say he came to the FBI's attention through his Facebook posts praising the Islamic State group and containing extremist rhetoric.

In April, Suarez allegedly posted, "Be a warrior, learn how to cut your enemies head and then burn down the body learn how to be the new future of the world Caliphate" - a reference to the Islamic State goal of building a regional fundamentalist entity.

The FBI says he later added a request "from any brother. How to make a bomb send me a video or something, what do I need to make it."

Suarez made his first court appearance on Tuesday and was being held without bail with a detention hearing set for next week. His temporary attorney, Richard Della Fera, said in an email that Suarez "may be a troubled and confused young man but he is certainly not a terrorist."

The complaint says Suarez told an FBI informant he wanted to make a timer bomb, bury it on a Key West beach and detonate it remotely. Suarez was arrested on Monday after taking possession of an inert explosive device provided by an FBI informant.

"I can go to the beach at the night time, put the thing in the sand, cover it up, so the next day I just call and the thing is gonna, is gonna make, a real hard noise from nowhere," Suarez told an FBI source in a recorded call, according to the complaint.

Never made an actual explosive

Suarez was being monitored for months by US authorities and never made an actual explosive, and there was no indication in the FBI complaint that he had contact with any Islamic State militants overseas. Still, Miami's FBI special agent in charge, George Piro, said the alleged threats had to be taken seriously.

Among other things, the FBI says Suarez also sought to make an Islamic State recruitment video using a script he wrote himself. It eventually was made under FBI surveillance at a motel, according to the complaint.

"American soil is the past, we will destroy America and divide it in two, we will rais(e) our black flag on top of your white house and any president on duty [cut head]," Suarez says in a script for the video.

The FBI says Suarez ordered an AK-47 assault rifle on the Internet and intended to have it delivered to a Key West pawn shop. Although he could legally purchase the weapon, the FBI says, Suarez incorrectly filled out paperwork and it was returned to the seller.

Read more on:    fbi  |  isis  |  us  |  security

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
-1 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.