Somali-born teen held for US bomb plot

2010-11-27 10:22

kalahari.com

Portland - US law enforcement agencies thwarted an attempt to blow up a car bomb at an annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony on Friday evening in Portland, Oregon, officials said early on Saturday.

The Justice Department identified the chief suspect as 19-year-old Mohamed Osman Mohamud of the town of Corvallis, a naturalised US citizen of Somali descent.
Mohamud was arrested by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Portland police around 02:40 on Saturday after he attempted to detonate what he believed to be an explosives-laden van that was parked near the tree lighting ceremony in Portland's Pioneer Courthouse Square, officials said.

But the device was in fact inert, and the public was never in any danger, they added.

"The threat was very real. Our investigation shows that Mohamud was absolutely committed to carrying out an attack on a very grand scale," said Arthur Balizan, a special agent in charge of the FBI in Oregon. "At the same time, I want to reassure the people of this community that, at every turn, we denied him the ability to actually carry out the attack."

According to court documents, in August 2009, Mohamud was in e-mail contact with an accomplice overseas who is believed to be involved in terrorist activities.

In December 2009, while the accomplice was located in the northwest frontier province of Pakistan, Mohamud and the suspect discussed the possibility of Mohamud traveling to Pakistan to engage in jihad.

This man allegedly referred Mohamud to a second conspirator overseas and provided Mohamud with a name and email address to facilitate the plot, according to the court documents.

Holy war

In the months that followed, Mohamud allegedly made several unsuccessful attempts to contact his partner.

Ultimately, last June, an FBI undercover operative contacted Mohamud via e-mail under the guise of being an associate of his Pakistani contact.

Mohamud and the FBI undercover operative then agreed to meet in Portland in July.

At this meeting, Mohamud told the FBI undercover operative that he had written articles that were published in "Jihad Recollections," an online magazine that advocated violence against non-Muslims.

He later told undercover FBI operatives that he had been thinking of conducting a holy war against infidels since the age of 15 and that he had identified a potential target for a bomb: the annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony in Portland's Pioneer Courthouse Square on November 26, 2010, the documents allege.

FBI operatives cautioned Mohamud several times about the seriousness of this plan, noting that there would be many children at the event. But Mohamud responded that he was looking for a "huge mass that will ... be attacked in their own element with their families celebrating the holidays," the affidavit pointed out.

Read more on:    us  |  security
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

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
15 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

DA wants to empower fishing communities - Zille

DA leader Helen Zille says the party has a plan for harbours and small-scale fishing communities.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Curve 3G 9300

Keep it together Text. Email. Social. With all the different ways to...

From R1399.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may find yourself putting in that extra effort on looking good and making an impression. ...read more

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.