Yet Helen Jung and others can’t seem to figure out why the terror-linked Oregon mosque is under FBI scrutiny. It takes 20+ paragraphs to find out the mosque is led by a convicted criminal. via Masjed As-Saber, Oregon Mosque Under FBI Scrutiny.
In September 2002, authorities arrested Kariye at Portland International Airport as he and family members prepared to fly to Dubai. He was charged the next day with Social Security fraud, but his arrest by the FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Force signaled a more ominous suspicion.
The arrest was unusual. A federal prosecutor successfully argued to hold Kariye without bail, saying a customs official at the airport had found traces of TNT on his bags. Tests two weeks later concluded the initial findings were wrong and Kariye was released the following month.
Kariye pleaded guilty six months later to understating his income to qualify for Oregon Health Plan benefits and using a Social Security card with a false birth date to obtain the benefits. A judge sentenced him to probation and he paid $6,000 in fines and restitution.
But that didn’t end the FBI’s interest. An affidavit in August 2003 revealed that agents believed Kariye financially supported a group of Muslims — known as the Portland Seven — who had tried to reach Afghanistan to fight for the Taliban in September 2001. Most had regularly prayed at Masjed As-Saber and were turned in by an FBI informant at the mosque who recorded hours of conversations with two primary defendants.
Kariye was never charged. The FBI affidavit stated the informant failed to record a key conversation that allegedly described the imam’s support.
In March, Wells Fargo abruptly decided to close the bank accounts of the imam and the mosque. Both had accounts at the bank for several years.
A Wells Fargo spokesman, Tom Unger, said he doesn’t know the reasons for the bank’s decision, but maintained that “neither religion nor any other factors that could be considered discriminatory are included as part of that process” for closing the accounts.
But Unger advised doing an Internet search on the mosque’s name, which turns up various links to news stories as well as other websites including those that allege a connection to terrorism.
And unlike Helen Jung, we did an Internet search and found this:
Sheik Mohamed Abdirahman Kariye was a co-founder of the Global Relief Foundation (GRF), which the U.S. government shut down in December 2001 because of its ties to terrorism. For at least one year after GRF’s creation in 1991, Kariye was on the organization’s board of directors.
…federal prosecutors would argue that Kariye funded a trip to Afghanistan for a group of would-be terrorists, all of whom were worshipers at the Islamic Center of Portland. In an FBI affidavit, it was stated that Kariye gave six persons (known as the Portland Six) $2000 each, for the purpose of financing their travels to Afghanistan, where they were to join al Qaeda and Taliban forces in their fight against American troops. One of the six, Jeffrey Battle, described the Islamic Center of Portland as being “the only mosque to teach about jihad.” Battle stated that he had “talked to Kariye about jihad,” that Kariye “had fought in the jihad,” and that “Kariye told his followers they should fight with other Muslims in Afghanistan against Americans.” Battle further stated that Kariye had provided “$2,000 for each of the men and the money was acquired from members of the mosque.”
More posts on Oregon here.