Judicial Watch • L.A. Sheriff Tight With Terrorist Group

L.A. Sheriff Tight With Terrorist Group

L.A. Sheriff Tight With Terrorist Group

MARCH 19, 2010

To stay on “positive terms” with the Muslim community the elected official who heads the nation’s largest sheriffs department regularly attends fundraisers for a renowned Islamic terrorist group that raises money for Hamas and was a co-conspirator in a federal terror-finance trial last fall.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca is so tight with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) that he’s attended at least 10 fundraisers for the radical group to meet the goals of his agency’s Muslim Community Affairs Division. The sheriff, whose department patrols a sprawling county of around 10 million and runs its jails, claims that Muslims play a vital role in protecting the U.S. and that their support is essential to Homeland Security.

So the sheriff, first elected in 1999, has joined forces with CAIR which was founded in 1994 by three Middle Eastern extremists (Omar Ahmad, Nihad Awad and Rafeeq Jaber) who ran the American propaganda wing of Hamas, known then as the Islamic Association for Palestine. CAIR has extensive links to foreign and domestic Islamists, was a co-conspirator in a federal terror-finance case involving the Hamas front group Holy Land Foundation and is largely funded by Islamic terrorist-supporting countries.  

It may seem odd for a top U.S. law enforcement officer to have such a cozy relationship with a proven terrorist organization. The revelation came via a news report of a heated confrontation between the sheriff and a Republican congressman at a recent Homeland Security subcommittee meeting in Washington D.C. 

Baca was telling the panel all about staying on positive terms with the Muslim community when the Indiana congressman (Mark Souder) questioned his loyalty to CAIR by challenging the concept of government officials going to fundraisers for organizations that practice radical speech. The sheriff fired back that he’ll continue attending CAIR fundraisers, assuring “I’ll be there 10 more times.”

This is hardly the first scandal involving the LA sheriff. Last year the family of a murdered high school football star sued Baca for releasing from jail the illegal immigrant gangbanger who pulled the trigger despite knowing he was a “dangerous felon and an immigration violator.” One day before gunning down the popular teenaged athlete, the illegal immigrant—a longtime member of a renowned violent street gang—was released from Los Angeles County jail where had been serving time for assault with a deadly weapon.  

Baca has also come under fire for his unscrupulously close relationship with local casinos, though his department is responsible for enforcing gambling laws. Located in his jurisdiction, the world’s largest poker club (Commerce Casino) has made tens of thousands of dollars in political contributions to Baca and more than $100,000 to the sheriff’s youth charity. Casino executives have also given Baca costly gifts, including sports and concert tickets, food and wine, golf fees and an expensive sculpture for Baca’s wedding.

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