El Paso: Nexus of a Narco-Terror Ring
Updated October 15. Judicial Watch covers Karakrah hearing in Cook County Court.
A sophisticated narco-terror ring with connections running from El Paso to Chicago to New York City has been uncovered with the help of Judicial Watch. This narco-terror ring involves two of the FBI’s “most wanted.”
On the morning of August 27, 2014, Emad Karakrah led police on a high-speed chase through Chicago streets as an Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) flag waved from his car. When Chicago Police finally stopped and arrested Karakrah, he told officers his car was rigged with explosives that would detonate if searched. Bomb disposal units secured the vehicle without incident. The arrest of Karakrah, 49 years old, helped expose a narco-terrorist network with roots and financing in El Paso.
Authorities believe Karakrah may have been “acting out” during the Chicago flag and bomb threat incident, in the frantic, desperate belief that the rest of his terrorist network had been apprehended by U.S. law enforcement.
Judicial Watch warned the public on August 29th of an imminent terrorist attack in the vicinity of El Paso, based on reporting from its own sources. (The Obama administration vehemently denied any imminent terror threat until two weeks after Judicial Watch’s report – then reversed its position and largely adopted Judicial Watch’s warning.) Karakrah’s Chicago meltdown occurred because he knew his El Paso and Juarez based networks were under pressure and collapsing. Simply stated, Karakrah was alone, panicking, and may have been seeking “martyrdom by cop.”
Karakrah is a logistics and transportation operative for militant Islamists in the United States, according to sources close to the investigation. He moves people, weapons, explosives, drugs, money, and other materiel to terrorist cells operating in Chicago, Brooklyn, NY and Saddle Brook, NJ — among other locations across the United States. More than a decade ago Karakrah smuggled drugs and weapons for the Juarez drug cartel in Mexico. In July of this year, he was on a supply run to a militant Islamist cell operating out of a basement in Brooklyn, sources tell Judicial Watch.
Karakrah is, allegedly, also a former FBI confidential informant who has gone rogue, breaking contact with his bureau handlers. Sources tell Judicial Watch that legal proceedings against Karakrah in Chicago have now twice been delayed because of FBI “equities.” He remains in Cook County Jail. On October 15, 2014 Judicial Watch was present at Karakrah’s court hearing in Cook County Court. He appeared with a public defender before Judge Evelyn B. Clay in courtroom 402 wearing a tan prison uniform with “2XL” on his chest. Karakrah’s hair was closely cropped and he had a beard and mustache. The prosecutor told the judge that the state had not completed discovery and the judge set a status conference for October 29. The hearing lasted about two minutes and Karakrah was hauled back to jail.
Before moving to Chicago sometime in 2011, Karakrah lived in Anthony, NM and a suburb of El Paso, TX. His ex-wife and two children remain in the El Paso area. In 1999 Karakrah pleaded guilty to felony “Criminal Sexual Penetration of a Child, Ages 13-16” as well as a related conspiracy charge, according to public records. Law enforcement sources characterized Karakrah as a “dangerous, crazy thug.”
Karakrah’s other El Paso connection is a friend and business associate, Hector Pedroza Huerta. He is a 44 year old, illegal alien currently residing in the El Paso County Jail Annex after his third arrest in August 2014 for “Driving While Intoxicated.” Huerta is reportedly now a “kitchen trustee” in the Jail Annex while awaiting court proceedings on federal immigration charges for “unlawful reentry of a removed alien.” His next federal court date is reportedly October 7, 2014.
Like Karakrah, Huerta is also believed to be deeply involved in smuggling drugs and weapons. Though he is an illegal alien, Huerta has resided in the El Paso area for years. He has ties to a wealthy American in El Paso with business interests in the transportation industry. The wealthy owner of the transportation business is believed to protect Huerta and provide him with free legal counsel in exchange for Huerta’s continued silence concerning certain aspects of the transportation business.
Huerta is alleged to have smuggled explosives and weapons from the Fort Bliss range and exercise areas in concert with corrupt US Army soldiers and government contractors with gate passes at the El Paso base. In 2009 he partnered with Karakrah to plan a Chicago truck bombing that was thwarted. Between December 2010 and February 2011, Huerta and Karakrah also planned two additional bomb plots targeting oil refineries in Houston and the Fort Worth Stockyards, according to Judicial Watch sources.
During the 2010/2011 timeframe, Karakrah and Huerta met with two of the FBI’s “most wanted” terrorists: Jaber A. Elbaneh and Adnan Gulshair el Shukrijumah (a/k/a: “Javier Robles”). The meetings took place in a private home in Anthony, NM. The four men discussed the movement of drugs, money and people.
The plots were further planned by fellow conspirators at a “mosque” on Redd Road in El Paso, as well as two other “mosques” in the city.
Karakrah, Huerta, Elbaneh and el Shukrijumah all met again in Anthony, NM in March 2014 according to Judicial Watch sources.
With both Karakrah and Huerta in custody, federal law enforcement officials have an extraordinary opportunity to break the powerful narco-terrorism grip on El Paso – assuming they can overcome internecine turf wars between the various agencies of the Justice Department and the Department of Homeland Security. Judicial Watch “connected the dots” in this narco-terrorism network for federal law enforcement.
For too long, “experts” have discounted the level of cooperation between Mexican drug cartels and Islamist militants. Meanwhile terrorists, weapons, drugs and money cross back-and-forth over the border virtually undetected, in a city long known as the “safest in America.”
Two recent, seemingly unrelated, arrests expose the nexus of Islamic terror and drug cartel trafficking operating from El Paso, that in the last four years has been nationally recognized for having the “lowest crime rate ranking” among municipalities with populations over 500,000.