Yemeni accused of plotting to kill troops

Mufid Elfgeeh, 30, of Rochester, is seen in an undated handout picture released by the Monroe County Sheriff's Office, in Rochester, New York. – Reuters

Mufid Elfgeeh, 30, of Rochester, is seen in an undated handout picture released by the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office, in Rochester, New York. – Reuters

ROCHESTER, New York — A New York business owner from Yemen plotted vengeance attacks against members of the US military for American actions overseas and Shiite Muslims over the civil war in Syria, according to federal authorities.

Federal authorities said in court papers that Mufid Elfgeeh, 30, bought two handguns and two silencers as part of a plan to kill members of the US armed forces returning from war, as well as Shiites in the Rochester area.

Elfgeeh was arrested on Saturday and faces two counts of receiving and possessing an unregistered firearm silencer. No plea was entered during a court appearance on Monday.

The investigation included linking Elfgeeh’s home computer to tweets from alias Twitter accounts expressing support for Al-Qaeda, violent holy war and Sunni insurgent groups in Syria, according to court papers.

The FBI gave an informant a Walther PPK .32-caliber handgun and a Glock 26, 9 mm handgun, both with functional silencers affixed to the barrels, two boxes of .32-caliber ammunition, and two boxes of 9-millimeter ammunition, according to the affidavit.

Elfgeeh, a naturalized US citizen who operates Halal Mojo and Food Mart in Rochester, paid the informant $1,050 in the transaction completed Saturday afternoon and was immediately arrested for possession of the silencers not registered in his name. US Attorney William Hochul said on Monday that Elfgeeh faces 10 years in prison for each silencer and the possibility of a $250,000 fine.

Elfgeeh frequently used Twitter to tweet and retweet messages expressing support for various terrorist groups and holy war, seeking donations to assist fighters in Syria, and praising Al-Qaeda as “our only savior,” authorities said.

According to an FBI affidavit, a government informant taped a December conversation with Elfgeeh in which he stated: “I’m thinking about doing something here to be honest with you. I’m thinking about just go buy a big automatic gun from off the street or something and a lot of bullets and just put on a vest or whatever and just go around and start shooting.”

Authorities said Elfgeeh changed his plans in March to killing returning soldiers, and he said in a taped conversation with an informant that he planned to act alone: “It could be right now in the daytime, and I could be … like this guy here or something … I could just go back and wait for him to when he leave to go to his garage, and just walk up slowly, boom, boom, boom, inside his garage.”– AP

 

 

 

 



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