October 03, 2012

FBI Offers Reward for MA Terrorist


You may remember Ahmad Abousamra as a co-conspirator in the the trial of Massachussetes blogger Tarek Mehanna. Mehanna was convicted of giving material aid to al Qaeda, in which he helped al Qaeda in Iraq's media division by providing them with translation services for their propaganda. Mehanna was a cause celbre among the Islamist sympathizers in the Northeast, and his case is often cited as an example of government persecution of Muslims.

Mehanna's buddy, Abousamra is on the lam, presumably in Syria. I'd hope his body shows up among the dead mujahideen, but that would deny someone the right to collect the $50,000 reward for information leading to his arrest. FBI:

The FBI today announced a reward of up to $50,000 for information leading to the arrest of Ahmad Abousamra, a U.S. citizen from Massachusetts charged with traveling to Pakistan and Yemen to seek military training so he could kill American soldiers....

Abousamra is charged with conspiracy to provide material support or resources to al Qaeda. He was indicted in 2009 for taking multiple trips to Pakistan and Yemen in 2002 and 2004 to seek jihad training. He also traveled to Iraq with the hope of joining forces fighting against Americans overseas. Abousamra left the U.S. in 2006 and may be living in living in Aleppo, Syria with his wife, at least one daughter, and extended family.

Abousamra’s co-conspirator, Tarek Mehanna, was convicted of terrorism charges by a federal jury in December 2011 and sentenced last April to 17.5 years in prison.

“Both men were self-radicalized and used the Internet to educate themselves,” said Special Agent Heidi Williams, a member of our Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) in Boston who has been working the case since 2006. “They came to it independently, but once they found each other, they encouraged each other’s beliefs,” Williams said, adding that both Abousamra and Mehanna were inspired by the 9/11 terror attacks. “They celebrated it,” she said.

Abousamra is of Syrian descent and has dual U.S. and Syrian citizenship. He is 31 years old, 5’11” tall, and at the time of his disappearance weighed about 170 pounds. He has dark brown hair and brown eyes. He is fluent in English and Arabic, has a college degree related to computer technology, and was previously employed at a telecommunications company. Abousamra last lived in the U.S. in a prosperous Boston suburb and has family members in the Detroit, Michigan area.

One of his distinguishing characteristics is his higher-pitched voice, which can be heard on [the video below].

Here's the FBI video.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:27 PM | Comments |