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Thread: 6 Charged In Alleged N.J. Terror Plot

  1. #1
    AuGmENTor Guest

    6 Charged In Alleged N.J. Terror Plot

    POSTED: 6:02 am EDT May 8, 2007
    UPDATED: 3:40 pm EDT May 8, 2007

    NEW YORK -- Six men from New Jersey have been charged in an alleged terror plot against soldiers at Fort Dix, according to law enforcement sources.

    Investigators said the men planned to use automatic rifles to enter Fort Dix and kill as many soldiers as they could at the New Jersey military base. Fort Dix was just one of several military and security locations allegedly scouted by this group, authorities said

    The suspects, identified as Dritan Duka, Eljvir Duka, Shain Duka, Mohamad Shnewer, Derdar Tatar and Agron Abdullahu, have been charged with conspiring to kill U.S. government employees. Separately, the Duka brothers have been charged with being illegal aliens in possession of firearms.

    The Dukas, believed to be Islamic radicals, are in the United States illegally, while Shnewer is a U.S. citizen born in Jordan, according to the Justice Department.

    The U.S. Attorney's office has told NewsChannel 4 that one of the suspects was born in Turkey and four in the former Yugoslavia. Investigators said most of the suspects have spent several years in the United States.

    White House spokesman Tony Snow said Tuesday there is "no direct evidence" that the men have ties to international terrorism.

    "They are not charged with being members of an international terrorism organization," Snow said. "At least at this point, there is no evidence that they received direction from international terror organizations."

    Investigators told NewsChannel 4's Jonathan Dienst that these arrests are the result of a tip to the FBI and use of an informant to track the suspects. Authorities were alerted in January 2006 after the terror suspects traveled to the Poconos for a training exercise where they practiced firing weapons, investigators said.

    Sources have told NewsChannel 4's Brian Thompson that the suspects tried to have a training videotape converted to DVD at a store in Cherry Hill, N.J., but the store owner alerted authorities.

    Authorities then inserted a cooperating witness into the alleged terror cell to be a go-between in their attempt to purchase M16 and AK-47 rifles. Arrests were made Monday night after the informant delivered dummy weapons paid for by the alleged terror cell suspects, authorities said.

    <LI>Click here to read the criminal complaint against the suspects (pdf).

    Investigators said the group discussed targeting numerous locations -- such as Dover Air base, Fort Monmouth, a Coast Guard building in Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Federal building -- before deciding on Fort Dix as their intended target. Fort Dix is run in part by the Army and is a reserve-training center, but active units take part in training, some of which focuses on counter-terrorism.

    Sources told NewsChannel 4's Brian Thompson that the family of one of the suspects owns Super Mario's Pizza, a restaurant near Fort Dix, and that the suspect claimed to know the base "like the back of his hand." The same suspect told the alleged terror group it would be easy to penetrate to "get the most soldiers killed," sources said.

    Investigators said the group of suspects have been discussing and planning for much of the last year. They allegedly pooled their savings to pay for the operation targeted at soldiers, according to investigators.

    Some of the group's alleged planning was caught on videotape, investigators said. On the videotape there is significant discussion of martyrdom.

    "Who is going to take care of my wife and kids?" one suspect asks on the tape, according to investigators. Another responds, "Allah will take care of your wife and kids."

    The alleged terror cell is described by investigators as disciples of Osama Bin Laden. Among the evidence seized was the downloaded will and testament of two Sept. 11 hijackers.

  2. #2
    AuGmENTor Guest

    Murder assault on Fort Dix ‘very easy,’ says accused plotter

    By John Shiffman


    From this afternoon's FBI news conference in Camden:
    • Suspects allegedly scoped out Dover Air Force Base and a Coast Guard station in Philadelphia.

    • Suspects said to have "burst out in laughter" at gruesome video of attack on U.S. Marine

    • Coordination of law enforcement called "model of the post-911 era"

    The FBI arrested six people last night, including five in Cherry Hill, for an alleged plot to kill soldiers at Fort Dix, several federal officials said.
    "If you want to do anything here, there is Fort Dix and I don't want to exaggerate, and I assure that you can hit an American base very easily," one of the men told an FBI informant, according to the FBI. "You take a map and draw it and then you calculate that there are areas where there are 100 to 200 individuals . . .

    "When you got a military base, you need mortars and RPGs," the man allegedly said.

    "My intent is to hit a heavy concentration of soldiers," the man on the tape said. "You hit 4, 5 or 6 humvees and light the whole place up."

    Greg Reinert, a Justice Department spokesman in Camden, described the six as "Islamic radicals . . . who were involved in a plot to kill U.S. soldiers at Fort Dix in New Jersey."

    "Their alleged intention was to conduct an armed assault on the Army base and to kill as many soldiers as possible," he said.

    A Justice Department spokesman in Washington noted that none of the suspects is charged with terrorism crimes.

    "We have no indication that they were receiving direction from a foreign terrorist organization," said Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd. "However, they were engaged in weapons training, surveilled targets and discussed killing large numbers of servicemen, and so that certainly warranted a strong law enforcement response."

    They also targeted Dover Air Force Base, but determined that it was too well-guarded to attack, the FBI said.

    "The actions of these defendants posed a real threat to the safety and security of New Jersey citizens," U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie said today. "We will remain steadfast in our focus on protecting New Jersey from the terrorist threat among us whether that threat is against everyday citizens or our men and women in uniform."

    While training for their alleged Fort Dix mission in the Poconos in February, some of the men allegedly discussed a planned attack on two American warships that were supposedly going to be docked in Philadelphia next year, the FBI said.

    During a meeting on March 16, also apparently recorded by the FBI, one of the men said:

    "You know where the stadiums are in Philadelphia? There is the Navy base and every year they have the Army-Navy ball game and they come and stay one or two weeks. The Navy base will then be full of people. You see this is an opportunity and the beauty of this location specifically if you have the proper weaponry, is that you can hit it. . ."

    Four of the men charged have been living in Cherry Hill and hail from the former Yugoslavia: Mohamed Shnewer and brothers Dritan, Eljzir and Shaine Duka.

    The others charged are Serdar Tatar of Philadelphia and Agron Abdullahu of Williamstown. One was born in Jordan, one in Turkey.

    The investigation began more than a year ago, according to an affidavit from FBI agent John J. Ryan.

    The tipster called the FBI on Jan. 31, 2006, and said that someone had brought a "disturbing" video to have duplicated.

    "The DVD depicted 10 young men who appeared to be in their early-20s shooting assault weapons at a firing range in a militia-like style while calling for jihad and shouting in Arabic, 'Allah Akbar,' or 'God is Great.'"

    In March 2006, an FBI cooperator infiltrated the group, the FBI said, and began recording his conversations with the Shnewer.

    On a laptop computer belonging to one suspect, the FBI found a file labeled "19," and "what appears to be the last will and testament of at least two of the hijackers" in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the FBI said.

    On July 29, a second FBI informant recorded a meeting with the three Dukas and Shnewer, during which they watched videos on the laptop that included "armed attacks on and the killing of U.S. military personnel," the FBI said.

    Three days later, the FBI said, the informant recorded a meeting with Shnewer in which he said the six were part of a "group that was planning to attack a U.S. military base."

    "Shnewer explained that they could utilize six or seven jihadists to attack and kill at least one hundred soldiers by using rocket-propelled grenades," the FBI said.

    Carolee Nisbet, a public information officer at Fort Dix, said: "I understand that they weren't just targeting Fort Dix, that it was a multiple-base plan to attack several bases in the Northeast." She declined to elaborate.

    Some of the six men tried to purchase automatic weapons from a local gun dealer before the arrests, sources said.

    "These guys were absolutely serious," one official said.

    Tatar provided the group with a map to the base, a federal official said.

    Their nationalities could not be confirmed this morning, but several are believed to be naturalized U.S. citizens.

    At the base this morning, Nisbet said: "They are going to make the security procedures more stringent, but we're not going to increase the threat level. We are just going to make people more aware of their surroundings."

    A successful attack on Fort Dix is highly unlikely. Armed soldiers guard every gate, whose approaches have curbs or barriers that force traffic to slowly snake as they get near.

    The soldiers perform "a 100 percent identification check" and do random vehicle searches, Nisbet said.

    Each gate also has additional security measures that are far from obvious. "We do not publicize this," she said.

    All six men are expected to be arraigned in federal court in Camden today, according to Reinert.

    Fort Dix is a 13,400-acre military post near Exit 7 of the New Jersey Turnpike in Burlington County. On an average day, there are about 15,000 to 16,000 soldiers and civilians. It is a regional reserve and mobilization site, the largest such site in the country.

    Fort Dix spokesman David Moore issued a statement this morning that says:

    "Security at Fort Dix remains stringent in the wake of arrests Monday of six men who were allegedly plotting a terrorist attack on the post. This alleged attack is a reminder that we are a nation at war, and that each of us must be vigilant and aware of our surroundings . . .

    "Mobilization and training continue as scheduled at Fort Dix, which has mobilized and demobilized more than 95,000 Soldiers since Sept. 11.

    "Those passing through checkpoints onto Fort Dix will notice more frequent vehicle searches and strict adherence to a 100-percent ID check, which may slow traffic."

    The FBI and immigration officials are expected to hold a news conference later today.

    Contact staff writer John Shiffman at 215-854-2658 or
    Inquirer staff writers Sam Wood and Ed Colimore contributed to this report

  3. #3
    AuGmENTor Guest

    The Pizza Connection; Easy Access to Fort Dix

    May 08, 2007 2:30 PM

    Brian Ross and Richard Esposito Report:

    The six men charged with planning an attack to kill several hundred U.S. soldiers at Fort Dix, N.J., thought they would have easy access to the base by pretending to deliver pizzas.
    In a criminal complaint filed this morning, an FBI agent writes that "SERDAR TATAR's father owned a restaurant near Fort Dix and made deliveries onto the base."

    The father, owner of Super Mario's Restaurant, told today that his staff often made pizza deliveries on to the base and to the nearby McGuire Air Force Base.

    The complaint says Tatar was able to acquire a map of Fort Dix, labeled "Cantonment Area Fort Dix, N.J.," and gave it to the five other men arrested by the FBI.

    Officials say the map was used by pizza delivery men to find their way around the base.

    According to the complaint, Tatar "described a place at Fort Dix they could target that would cause a power outage and allow for an easier attack on the military personnel there."

    "What we are witnessing here is kind of a brand new form of terrorism," said J.P. "Jody" Weis, the special agent in charge of the FBI's Philadelphia field office, at an afternoon press conference. "They operate under the radar...they strike when they feel it is right whenever that might be."

    Tatar's father told he talked to his son only yesterday, and there was no indication of anything unusual, no indication that his 24-year-old son harbored a deep hatred of the United States.

    "There's something wrong here," the father said. "I came here from Turkey in 1992, and this is my country. I love this country."

    He said his son had not worked at the restaurant for at least a year, and he believed his son was working at a 7-11 convenience store in Philadelphia.

    The criminal complaint tells a much different story, describing Tatar as suspicious of the FBI's undercover operative who infiltrated the group.

    Last November, Tatar allegedly contacted a sergeant in the Philadelphia police department to check the name of the undercover informant.

    The complaint quotes Tatar as telling the undercover operative, "Whether you are or not (FBI), I'm gonna do it. Know why? It doesn't matter to me, whether I get locked up, arrested or get taken away, it doesn't matter. Or I die, doesn't matter, I'm doing it in the name of Allah."

    "Allah Akbar," meaning "God is great," was a phrase the men arrested knew well. According to the federal complaint, an investigation was launched after a photo shop clerk alerted authorities to a video brought in by one of the suspects with "disturbing" content on it 17 months ago.

    The video "depicted 10 young men who appeared to be in their 20s shooting assault-style weapons at a firing range in militia-like style while calling for jihad and shouting in Arabic, 'Allah akbar,'" the federal complaint says.

    The investigation, through electronic eavesdropping and the confidential informant who had infiltrated the group, soon determined the men were serious in their intent to attack a military base using automatic weapons.

    The plot never reached an operational phase, but the alleged cell members had finished their surveillance and selected Fort Dix as their target.

    Tatar, along with Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, 22, Eljvir Duka, 23, Dritan Duka, 28, and Shain Duka, 26, is charged with "plotting to kill as many soldiers as possible" in an armed assault on Fort Dix. The sixth man, Argon Abdullahu, 24, was arrested on related charges of aiding and abetting the possession of illegal firearms.

    Shnewer, regarded as the group's ringleader, said he wanted to kill at least 100 soldiers.

    "My intent is to hit a heavy concentration of soldiers...This is exactly what we are looking for. You hit four, five or six Humvees and light the whole place [up] and retreat completely without any losses," he was recorded as saying.

    Shnewer, who was born in Jordan, is employed as a Philadelphia cab driver. Eljvir, Dritan and Shain Duka are brothers, all of whom were born in the former Yugoslavia and are illegally residing in the U.S. They run a roofing business together. Abdullahu was also born in the former Yugoslavia and is employed at a Shop-Rite Supermarket.

    As for Super Mario's Restaurant, its chef, Joseph Hofflinger, 35, quit today after finding out the news that the restaurant's owner was the father of one of the suspected terrorists.

    Video See the Chef and Hear in His Own Words Why He Quit
    When asked by reporters as to why he quit, Hofflinger said, "Because I won't work for somebody that has any ties or admission to terrorists." He continued, "My son is in the 82nd Airborne. I won't work for a place that supports terrorism so I'm out."

  4. #4
    Eckolaker Guest
    Probably the dumbest terrorist plot "they" have cooked up yet.

  5. #5
    AuGmENTor Guest
    Did they mention a reason these guys wanted to do this in here that I missed?

  6. #6
    Eckolaker Guest
    To kill as many American Soldiers as possible. Kinda hard to do considering they are all in Iraq or Afghanistan. Seems to me it would be a lot easier to do it outside of this country.

    Fortunately, I still believe there are some local law enforcement officials out there actually doing their job. These guys would probably catch any "real" or False-flag" terrorism long before it would happen. Albeit any tampering from Federal officials of course, I.E. Project Able Danger

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