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Suspected Florida Terrorists Group Arrested by FBI - Charges Include Conspiracy - Neighbors Said Faction Acted Suspiciously

June 23rd 2006

Suspected Florida Terrorists Group Arrested by FBI - Charges Include Conspiracy - Neighbors Said Faction Acted Suspiciously

Sears Tower

The FBI says seven men in Florida have been arrested in an FBI-led raid and are being held on charges which include “conspiring to support the al Qaeda terrorist organization and conspiracy to levy war against the U.S.” 

It appears the group had never advanced beyond the discussion stages, according to the Justice Department. Their alleged discussions involved bombing of the 110-story Sears Tower in Chicago, the FBI Building in North Miami Beach, Florida, and other government buildings in Miami-Dade County.

United States Attorney General, Alberto R. Gonzales, said the group was charged with conspiring to support the al Qaeda terrorist organization.  He went on to say that the group was indicted on four counts including planning to provide material support for al Qaeda, conspiracy to provide material support and resources to terrorists; conspiracy to maliciously damage and destroy buildings by means of an explosive device; and conspiracy to levy war against the Government of the United States.

 

The men named in the federal grand jury indictment in Miami are Narseal Batiste, Patrick Abraham, Stanley Grant Phanor, Naudimar Herrera, Burson Augustin, Lyblenson Lemorin and Rothschild Augustine.       

Gonzales said they had hoped that for their attacks to be, quote, “just as good or greater than 9/11.”  They allegedly hoped to wage “full ground war” against the United States and to “kill all the devils we can.” 

The indictment alleges that Batiste, the ringleader of this group, intended to recruit and supervise individuals to organize and train for a mission of war against the United States. Batiste and his co-conspirators allegedly attempted to obtain the support of al Qaeda to achieve their goals.

 

They also took steps to carry out their plans for violent attacks on this nation, according to Gonzales. Those steps included seeking out uniforms and weapons, conducting reconnaissance, and taking bayat, the oath of allegiance to al Qaeda. We know this because an individual they thought was a member of al Qaeda was present at their meetings. In actuality he was working with the South Florida Joint Terrorism Task Force. Comment on this article at our Forum

Neighbors have reported that the group was acting suspiciously.  On a report on CNN a neighbor said the members would rap their heads with cloth so that you could only see their eyes.  They would act like they were standing guard “like soldiers” over their industrial style building. Another neighbor said they would talk to “no body” and were “acting like they were in military training.” 

The defendants include five American citizens, one legal permanent resident and one Haitian national in the United States illegally.  They are expected to make appearances in U.S. District Court in Miami today.

 

If convicted the defendants in this case each face a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison on the charges of conspiracy to provide material support or resources. The defendants also face a maximum of 20 years in prison on each charge of conspiracy to destroy buildings by use of explosives and conspiracy to levy war against the United States.

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