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Judicial Watch • Somali Charged in Terrorism Ring Worked at Major U.S. Airport

Somali Charged in Terrorism Ring Worked at Major U.S. Airport

Somali Charged in Terrorism Ring Worked at Major U.S. Airport

DECEMBER 28, 2015

In the latest disturbing example of the government’s failure to root out foreign Islamic terrorists a young Somali man, who bragged about building rockets that could strike landing planes, worked at a major U.S. airport as a baggage handler.

This month the Somali, 20-year-old Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame, was charged with conspiracy to help the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS). He became the 10th Somali man to be charged with terrorism in Minnesota in a very short period of time. Judicial Watch wrote about the case a few weeks ago and linked the federal complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota. Warsame was among a group of men from the Twin Cities’ large Somali community who planned to travel to Syria to fight with ISIS, according to the feds. The men gathered at a local mosque to watch videos glorifying religious violence and Warsame paid $200 to have a third party get him an expedited passport to travel abroad to join fellow jihadists, the complaint states. Three of the accused have already pleaded guilty to terrorism charges, one is in Syria and five are scheduled to be tried next year.

Now a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agent involved in the case reveals that Warsame once worked at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport as a baggage handler. Local media outlets published a national newswire report on the FBI special agent’s testimony during a recent court hearing. The federal agent’s testimony featured breathtaking information that’s not included in the criminal complaint, including the fact that Warsame worked as a baggage handler at the airport “with access to the airplanes.” The FBI agent also testified about secret recordings made by a bureau informant in which Warsame says he could build “homemade rockets” that could reach 2,000 feet, enough to strike a descending plane.

The security lapse is astounding considering that a decade and a half ago Islamic terrorists used airplanes that had departed from major U.S. airports as weapons of mass destruction. The reality is however, that security is unbelievably lax for airport baggage handlers and other facility employees. The severity of the problem was highlighted earlier this year when the feds busted a huge, multistate operation in which baggage handlers at a northern California airport were transporting illegal drugs across the country. The baggage handlers circumvented six airport security measures and provided marijuana to outbound passengers for distribution in cities throughout the United States, according to the federal complaint which is largely redacted. Incredibly, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has determined that full screening of airport employees would not lower the risk to the public.

Around the same time that the alarming details in the Wasame case started trickling out, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the monstrous agency created to prevent a repeat of 9/11, launched a “review” of the visa program that permitted the San Bernardino terrorist to enter the U.S. In an announcement made public earlier this month, DHS reveals that it has formed a “working group to scrutinize each step” of the now famous K-1 “fiancé” visa process. The goal is to improve background checks and better scrutinize visa adjudication practices worldwide to “ensure that the highest level of consistent standards is being met.”

A few days later the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee confirmed that immigration officials did not thoroughly vet the San Bernardino terrorist, Tashfeen Malik, a native of Pakistan. In fact, an immigration official reviewing her application requested evidence that Malik had met the criteria to obtain the fiancé visa but it was never provided and the document was approved anyways. In order to obtain K-1 fiancée visa, it is required to demonstrate proof that the U.S. citizen and foreign national have met in person. However, Malik’s immigration file does not show sufficient evidence for this requirement.

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