Ashburn Man Arrested in Metro Terror Plot

Farooque Ahmed, 34, of Ashburn, Va., was arrested today for attempting to assist others whom he believed to be members of al-Qaeda in planning multiple bombings at Metrorail stations in the Washington, D.C., area.

David Kris, Assistant Attorney General for National Security; Neil H. MacBride, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and John G. Perren, Acting Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office, made the announcement after Ahmed was taken into custody earlier this morning.

In announcing this arrest, officials emphasized that at no time was the public in danger during this investigation and that the FBI was aware of Ahmed’s activities from before the alleged attempt began and closely monitored his activities until his arrest. The public should be assured that there was no threat against Metrorail or the general public in the Washington, D.C., area.

“Today’s case underscores the need for continued vigilance against terrorist threats and demonstrates how the government can neutralize such threats before they come to fruition,” said David Kris, Assistant Attorney General for National Security.   “Farooque Ahmed is accused of plotting with individuals he believed were terrorists to bomb our transit system, but a coordinated law enforcement and intelligence effort was able to thwart his plans.”

“It’s chilling that a man from Ashburn is accused of casing rail stations with the goal of killing as many Metro riders as possible through simultaneous bomb attacks,” said U.S. Attorney Neil H. MacBride. “Today’s arrest highlights the terrorism threat that exists in Northern Virginia and our ability to find those seeking to harm U.S. citizens and neutralize them before they can act. We are grateful for the outstanding work of the FBI in detecting and disrupting this plot.”

“Just as we ask the public to remain vigilant about possible terrorists among us, the FBI remains committed to rooting out and dismantling those groups and organizations who seek to cause harm to U.S. citizens,” said Acting FBI Assistant Director in Charge John G. Perren.

Yesterday, a federal grand jury in Alexandria, Va., returned a three-count indictment against Ahmed, a naturalized U.S. citizen born in Pakistan, charging him with attempting to provide material support to a designated terrorist organization, collecting information to assist in planning a terrorist attack on a transit facility, and attempting to provide material support to help carry out multiple bombings to cause mass casualties at D.C.-area Metrorail stations. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of 50 years in prison.

Ahmed was arrested by the FBI early this morning and is scheduled to make his first appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge John F. Anderson at 2:00 P.M. EDT at the federal courthouse in Alexandria.

According to the indictment, from April 2010 through Oct. 25, 2010, Ahmed attempted to assist others whom he believed to be members of al-Qaeda in planning multiple bombings to cause mass casualties at Metrorail stations. On April 18, 2010, Ahmed allegedly drove to a hotel in Dulles, Va., and met with a courier he believed to be affiliated with a terrorist organization who provided Ahmed with a document that provided potential locations at which future meetings could be arranged. On or about May 15, 2010, at a hotel in Herndon, Va., Ahmed allegedly agreed to watch and photograph another hotel in Washington, D.C., and a Metrorail station in Arlington, Va., to obtain information about their security and busiest periods.

According to the indictment, Ahmed allegedly participated in surveillance and recorded video images of Metrorail stations in Arlington, Va., on four occasions. On or about July 19, 2010, in a hotel room in Sterling, Va., Ahmed allegedly handed a memory stick containing video images of a Metrorail station in Arlington to an individual whom Ahmed believed to be affiliated with al-Qaeda. On that same day, Ahmed allegedly agreed to assess the security of two other Metrorail stations in Arlington as locations of terrorist attacks.

The indictment further alleges that, on or about Sept. 28, 2010, in a hotel room in Herndon, Ahmed handed a USB drive containing images of two Metrorail stations in Arlington to an individual whom Ahmed believed to be affiliated with al-Qaeda.

According to the indictment, on or about Sept. 28, 2010, Ahmed provided to an individual whom he believed to be affiliated with al-Qaeda diagrams that Ahmed drew of three Metrorail stations in Arlington and provided suggestions as to where explosives should be placed on trains in Metrorail stations in Arlington to kill the most people in simultaneous attacks planned for 2011.

Comments

  1. A muslim. Color me shocked. Why do we continue to let these people into this country?

    • Mr Mister says:

      Because not all muslims are terrorist. It’s like saying all Irish are drunks. And hey, check your resent history. There are white Christians who terrorize. Mc Veigh , Roudolph, and Roeder just to name a few. I get where you are coming from. But you can’t use broad strokes.

    • The article says nothing about “Muslims”.
      [redacted]

    • Curious one..... says:

      Hey Sarge. You aren’t in the Star preaching your fear-mongering politics… Please don’t bring that garbage here…..

  2. Him being a Muslim is not the issue. There are thousands of peace loving Muslims (and people of all religions) in this country. Many Muslims were born in this country and most respect the laws. When you make such statements like “letting these people into this country” you really show your ignorance.
    Honestly, are you trying to stir the pot, get a reaction, [redacted]?

    • Of course it’s the issue. At least part of it. The religion itself has a problem right now, and in my opinion it’s crazy to let people from that part of the world keep flowing into the country.

      And nowhere did I say all muslims are terrorists. I know this may shock you, but there are many muslims in the Middle East that want nothing more than to be left alone in peace. Worked with a few in Saudi Arabia and had tea with others in Northern Iraq, to name a few situations.

      On the other hand there are those that want you and I dead. And it just so happens that most of them are muslim.

      Truth hurts I guess

      • Obviously you need to read your post.
        “I know this may shock you, but there are many muslims in the Middle East that want nothing more than to be left alone in peace”

        Why would that shock me. That’s what I was telling you. Way to turn it around.
        Read your post and you’ll see [redacted]

        • Jim,

          You stated in part;

          “When you make such statements like “letting these people into this country” you really show your ignorance.” and “Him being a Muslim is not the issue”

          It certainly is the issue. Stating that the person behind a terrorist plot is muslim is not a far reach these days. I seriously doubt that he was plotting to blow people up soley because they are government employees, or because his christain values told him to do so.

          He did it because the way he interprets islam tells him it’s OK. Unfortunately, there are a few million people on the planet today that have the same interpretation.

          And as long as even a few people from that part of the world think that way, IMO it’s stupid to let them into the country to live among us.

          It’s only gonna take one to succeed to kill a few thousand more of us

          • So who can’t come in? “that part of the world” specifically, who cannot IYHO come into this country?

          • I would put a halt to people from Afghanistan and Pakistan coming here until at least a few years after we are out of that part of the world. I’d give serious scrutiny to anyone coming out of any Middle Eastern country, as well as Bosnia and some other countries in the Balkens as well. Probably would throw in peope from Indonesia too

            I’m kinda loath to look soley at religion as an entrance factor, but with the situation the way it is in the world today, people of muslim faith would have to have a really good reason to come here. At least until things settle down or the religion expels those that want to blow things up on a regular basis

          • You might as well include people from India. Some of them have origins in Pakistan, and they look similar. Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate people from Latin American from those in the middle east, better include them. Also, some light skinned African Americans may have to leave.

            Don’t worry skinheads, you guys are okay to stay.

          • “You might as well include people from India. Some of them have origins in Pakistan, and they look similar.”

            That is correct. However, most Indians are Hindu or Sikh and don’t get along well with muslims. In fact, the reason Pakistan was created by the Brits was to separate the two religions.

            “Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate people from Latin American from those in the middle east, better include them. Also, some light skinned African Americans may have to leave.”

            Your words, not mine. Besides, the people from those parts of the world mostly don’t subscribe to islam

            Opps, there’s that pesky word again. “Islam”

          • Yes, my words. See how ignorant it is? Or maybe you think it’s okay. Hmmmmmmmm

            “Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.”
            Will Durant

          • You are comparing skin color with a religious philospphy

            Apples and oranges

          • So screening for religion occurs as part of entering this country?

          • Jim,

            Your attempt to either put words in my mouth by inferring I would say something like this:

            “Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate people from Latin American from those in the middle east, better include them. Also, some light skinned African Americans may have to leave.”

            or by trying to sound like someone on my side of the issue saying that people must get out because of skin color, opened up the “skin color v religion” aspect of the thread.

            My asseration was simply that to compare the two is a fallacy of logic.

            Were I in charge, and considering world events, religious screening probably would be part of the equation

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Define “have to have a really good reason to come here.” Why did our ancestors come here? To find gold, or a new route to the Orient, or to spread the Gospel while looking for #1 or #2. Some were sent here as convicts to Goergia and South Carolin. Some came for better work opportunities, or the chance to own some land and chase a dream. Now, you’re saying that Emma Lazarus’ poem, on the Statue of Liberty, needs an asterisk?

          • “He did it because the way he interprets islam tells him it’s OK.”

            Your opinion …

          • Don,

            According to the news, this cat was going to make the pilgrimage to Mecca this fall and said he would be ready to conduct jihad next year.

            I’m pretty sure the requirement to make the pilgrimage (which is required of muslims at least once in their lives) and to wage jihad can’t be found in the Bible

            If it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck……..

          • Sarge,

            What about the abortion clinic shooters and bombers. Do their religion tell them to kill?

          • I’m sure it does. But we’re not talking about that, are we? And when was the last time you heard of an instance like that anyway?

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Sarge, there was an instance a couple years ago. If they’re doing it “in the name of God,” where are they getting that? Such a thing is not in the Bible I read.

          • As much as I hate to admit it, point taken. 🙂

            Now stop stirrin’ up the dust. It’s irritating the locals. [darfc]

          • Believe it or not, I’m not going for shock jock value here, or just trying to get people cranked up.

            Obviously, I have strong feelings on the subject. My opinions were formulated from years in the miltary, being shot at by people of a certain religion and from a couple of years working for a government agency that deals with these types after my military time.

            Am I an expert in islam? No [redacted] And I have read the koran and the hadiths. That, and what I figure to be almost two and a half years living in Middle Eastern countries gives me a………………unique perspective on the situation

          • Welcome home, and thank you for your service.

          • You and millions of other people. So what?

          • So maybe I’ve formed opinions based on experiences and seeing certain aspects of islam up close and personal, instead of forming them on what our current adminstration and Katie Couric say it’s OK to think about the subject

          • clarkehaven says:

            Sarge….from all of us “stirred up locals” who agree with you……thanks for taking the time to spar with some of these smug, blame-America-first liberal hypocrites.

            They will certainly NEVER let a little thing like reality effect their elitist opinions so what chance do your real life experiences have in swaying them?

            Keep the faith and keep speaking (posting) the TRUTH!

          • America is not being blamed for anything here. I love this country, fought for it, and was willing to die for it. I don’t care how long someone was in the military, and thinks they’ve travelled the world. It’s no exccuse for pretending to be so “hardened” that one has to be bigotted. I will defend those wronged until the end. Get over it Sarge. No one is creeping around your house planting IED’s.

          • Mr Mister says:

            Well Sarge seems to have the same views we’ve seen before. Didn’t Hitler want other races out of his country? Didn’t he judge them by what religion they practiced? Why do we continue to live our history again?

          • This one’s for Mr Mister, since some things never change …

            Godwin’s Law

            As a thread grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one.

            http://encyclopediadramatica.com/Godwin's_Law

          • Good one Don

            I, on the other hand, see it as the last card to be pulled when someone is losing an arguement

            BIGOT!!!!!!

            HILTER!!!!!!!!!!

            In fact, it reminds me of an old joke. What do you call a conservative that’s winning an arguement with a liberal?

            Bigot.

            Personally, it doens’t bother me, because it’s thrown out so frequently nowadays, it’s become meaningless.

          • Jim,

            Thank you for your service. However, I’m pretty sure I didn’t dream 22 years and twenty some countries.

            Having served, you should know that the way you win a war is to be hard. And we are at war, whether the left thinks so or not.

            As the 9/11 report so famously said, “They were at war with us, but we were not at war with them”

            Seems at least with some people, we’re reverting back to pre-9/11 mindset

            I can assure you, the terrorists are not

          • For the record, not a liberal, just a freedom loving, gun toting Nam combat vet who demands equal rights for all, willing to defend those who cannot defend themselves.

          • “who demands equal rights for all, willing to defend those who cannot defend themselves”

            Even those who want to blow you up?

          • I’m with Sarge on this. A more PC statement would be to say RADICAL Muslims should all be on our watch list and yes, it is perfectly okay to ban certain groups from entering your country if they are deemed a threat to your country and/or it’s people. Many other countries do this without debate. The difficulty would be in determining who is a radical Muslim and who is a peaceful Muslim so temporarily, we must ban most ALL Muslims who are not citizens from entering the country. It’s part of being at war. During other times in our history, I am sure there were other groups not allowed in our country, the Japanese and Germans during WWII come to mind. Better to be safe than sorry. As we are learning more and more each day, there are already cells within our country who want to take evil advantage of our generosity and freedom to use against us.

          • “Many other countries do this without debate.”

            We are not “many other countries”. We are not like ANY other country. Here in America we have this little thing called Freedom of Religion. You cannot keep people out based on their religion or where they are from. Our constitution is not always easy to uphold, this is one example of why. Free speech is another given the nasty protesters at military funerals. Many of us hate that our constitution protects even them, but it does. That slippery slope that Sarge referred to in his editorial applies here too.

            Once we ban new Middle Easterners, Muslims, etc from entering the country, then we can set up internment camps and round up all of those that are already here, legally or otherwise.

          • And as I said, the radical Muslims are and will take advantage of your freedom here if we don’t employ some common sense and limitations on who we allow into the country. Our founding fathers did not have radical Muslims to contend with when they wrote the Constitution. We are dealing with a threat like we have never had before. DO we really need to allow freedom of jihad? How many of your “peaceful” Muslims condemed the attacks on 9/11/01? I seem to recall dancing in the street and zero condemnations.

          • OK then, lets re-write the constitution. We need to limit the freedoms that our forefathers fought for – update them for the modern day. Kinda like the Bible doesn’t apply to modern society either. No, they didn’t have Muslims when the constitution was written, but they had England. War is war, you fight your enemy. God knows when England was our enemy we were not keeping every Englishman out of our country.

            Like everything else today, we will need volumes of explanation about what applies when, where, and to whom. It will have to be updated regularly so that we know which religions, races, and nationalities are currently allowed or banned. Perhaps instead, we ought to leave it up to whatever administration might be in control at the time. Sorry Sarge, your arguments work for some but they don’t fit in with the constitution. And the blanket statements about liberals are a lame attempt to win an argument that can’t be won.

          • Well, Ann, then how do you explain the restrictions that the government placed on previous demagraphics coming into the country? Were their “rights” not violated? How did the government do this wthout re-writing the Constitution?

            Fact is, precident has already been set to restrict immigration. No one has a “right” to come here.

          • Naked Truth says:

            It was under George Bush and the GOP. Seems he did a lot of things that violated the Constitution and our rights. But I guess that makes it ok with you. But if Barack Hussein Obama that would be a differnt story , wouldn’t it. Under your views our President would have to go too. He’s “got one of them there names”. As one of the great Presidents once said. “The only thing we have to fear is fear it’s self.” Why are you afraid of every muslim sounding name?

          • BTW, here’s some lite reading for ya Ann

            Like I said, it’s been done before

            http://eh.net/encyclopedia/article/cohn.immigration.us

            I especially like this part

            It is noteworthy that the Chinese Exclusion Act also prohibited the immigration of “convicts, lunatics, idiots” and those individuals who might need to be supported by government assistance

            We could probably use those stipulations today

            During WWII, German, Italian and Japanese immigrants were declared “enemy aliens” and restrictions were put on their movements.

            Oh, the horror! Oh, the humanity!

            http://home.comcast.net/~m.quagliata/iahistory.html

            Then there was The Alien Registration Act of 1940

            http://tucnak.fsv.cuni.cz/~calda/Documents/1940s/Alien%20Registration%20Act%20of%201940.html

            Fingerprinting

            Oh Noooooooes!

            All without changing the Constitution

            Imagine that

          • Just because it has been done before does not make it right. This country has done plenty that is immoral and/or goes against our constitution. We are supposed to learn from that, not repeat it. There is nothing “drama queen” about asking what to do with those that are already here. Based on your postings, and history, I would expect you to be rounding folks of various nationalities and religions and putting them in camps. That precedent has been set.

          • “Based on your postings, and history, I would expect you to be rounding folks of various nationalities and religions and putting them in camps. That precedent has been set.”

            Never said a word about “rounding people up” Ann. I simply maintain that it is time to stop immigration from certain parts of the world

            As for the ones that are already here, the FBI appears to be on the ball. At least in DC. I know they are monitoring mosques, which I am fine with and I assume Obama is fine with as well, since he has to sign off on that stuff.

          • Yes, you can Ann. For years, we restricted immigration into this country by people from the Soviet Union and Easten Bloc countries. We restrict people from Iran today.

            It can be done, it just takes someone with enough ‘nads to do it

          • “Once we ban new Middle Easterners, Muslims, etc from entering the country, then we can set up internment camps and round up all of those that are already here, legally or otherwise.”

            Don’t go all drama queen on me now Ann.

            As Bubba D noted, how do you tell he radicals from the peaceful muslims? You can’t for the most part, unless one of our intel agencies are on to them.

            So, aside from that one exception, we know we can’t tell the difference. We also know that while all muslims are not terrorists, MOST terrorists nowadays are muslim

            Again, why keep letting them in so they can participate in little plots like the one in the article? Simply to “uphold our ideals” and to be “better than other countries?”

            That kind of thinking is going to get people killed

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Dude…really? Our government rounded up Japanese-American citizens and moved them lock, stock, and barrel to intenrment camps out of some jingoistic fear that they harbored some innate allegiance to the Chrysanthemum Throne in the Land of the Rising Sun. No proof was needed, no cause was needed, really…it was just done. German POWs were brought over here, and those of German decent (citizens thogh they were) were harassed. In the late 1950s, it was the “Red Scare” – thanks to Senator McCarthy and his ilk. The Klan used similar tactics just a few generatiosn ago, and the neo-Nazis and other groups scream out such things now.

            There are “cells,” called “paramilitary groups,” in areas of our country, right now, who exist to plot a way to “defend themselves” and even overthrow our government if ncecessary because of all the craziness. Their skin color, by and large – white. Does that mean we look askance at every person in camo clothing toting a firearm? No.

          • When was the last time a militia group made the news Fly? When was the last time one of them blew something up or plotted to blow something up?

            There have been 5 separate incidents in the US just this summer of muslims that plotted to blow things or people up

            New York very nearly sufferd a car bomb attack this summer, and were it not for the grace of God and the stupidity of the muslim terrorist, they’d probably still be scrapping pieces of people off the buildings.

            How long do we let that go on?

            Oh, BTW, people of German descent were put into internment camps as well, just like the Japanese. You just don’t hear about it as much

          • Yes, and there are Christians who believe that the Bible tells them it is ok to kill doctors who perform abortions or that God hates gays so He kills American soldiers and miners. This does not make all Christians lunatics.

            Looks like the real Sarge is back.

          • “Looks like the real Sarge is back.”

            Glad I didn’t disappoint

            “This does not make all Christians lunatics”

            You are correct. And how many times in this thread have I said that there are peaceful muslims in the world?

          • Fly on the wall says:

            Timothy McVeigh is pretty white, and he offed 168 people in Oklahoma City because he, a disgruntled and disturbed former soldier, was peeved at the federal government. Terrorists can come in every shade of tan that walks the planet, and have any of a thousand reasons (or none!) to do what they’re going to do. You’re saying that we should move to wholesale racial profiling and deny someone access to this country – even if they have legit documentation – simply because they “look Muslim”? Wow…exactly how is that different from those who wanted segregation?

      • Sarge, why did you start your first post with “A muslim. Color me shocked.”? When you find out that the person doing the shootings in the Fairfax area is NOT a muslim, are you going to be shocked? Like I said earlier, there are people that kill in the name of all religions. BTW Sarge, where in this artical does it mention the word Muslim? How does the truth feel now?

        • Sarge, why did you start your first post with “A muslim. Color me shocked.”? BTW Sarge, where in this artical does it mention the word Muslim? How does the truth feel now?

          Well, between the name, “Pakistani born” and “assisting al-Qaeda” I went way out on a limb and drew a conclusion. Turns out I was correct. I’m aware that it’s not PC to bring up nowadays, but as the kids say “It is what it is”.

          • So if he were, say black. And out walking the street, would you say he was dealing drugs or a pimp?

          • Depends on if he’s wearing a uniform or not.

          • Naked Truth says:

            You watch too much Fox News. You are using thier talking points. Think for yourself. Not all muslims are evil. If you think of it , how many wars weren’t started because of religion? Everyone is right . you sound like a bigot. Don’t hate me , I’m white.

  3. “In fact, it reminds me of an old joke. What do you call a conservative that’s winning an arguement(sic) with a liberal?

    Bigot.

    And what do you call a liberal who is winning an argument with a conservative?

    Intellectual, elitist.

    Sometimes labels are not so far off. I know which label I prefer. Someday bigots will never win.

    BTW, isn’t it ironic that the party that fights for the low-income folks are the elitists while the ones who are fighting for tax cuts for the highest income earners are the… what.

    Personally, I prefer a president with a complete education. If that makes me an elitist than so be it.

    • Please Ann tell me, how does Obama have a more complete education than any of our past presidents? And am I to assume based on your “joke” that you believe all conservatives are Bigots? “sometimes labels are not so far off” ya think? Please explain the difference between labeling all conservatives bigots and all muslims terrorist?

      • Naked Truth says:

        Well a lot of conservatives I know and work with are bigots. They label all hispanics as “illeagal mexicans”. All middle easterns as “muslim terrorist”. Heck they can’t get passed the fact that Obama is not a muslim and is US born. As far as educated presidents go. Its’ a shame that G W Bush was sandwiched between Clinton and Obama. Have you listened to the last three presidents speak?
        This suspect may be tied to Al Queda. But there are far too many white Christian terrorist in the US. How many of them are liberal?
        Don’t forget that ALL men are created equal. And for all you conservatives, WWJD? Do you think Jesus would have people of different races removed from his country because they looked like they may have a different religion? Red and Yellow, Black and White…Jesus loves the children of the WORLD.

      • You will notice the first sentence in my comment had quotes around it. It came from Sarge (the bigot thing) his words, not mine. I think he was joking considering his apparent politics, but I didn’t get it. No Lucy, I have friends and loved ones who are politically conservative. I don’t consider them bigots. They are even right about some things occasionally. 🙂

  4. Sarge Willis says:

    I simply have to put a disclaimer here that I am not the Sarge writing these comments. I guess there are a couple of us with the same user name. I have no comments to add to this discussion though I read it all the way through.
    Sarge Willis