It only took U.S. officials 18 years to vet a jihadist killer who had been admitted to the U.S. and given U.S. citizenship. Better late than never. Feel safe? via FBI — Naturalized U.S. Citizen Charged with Immigration Fraud for Failing to Disclose Terrorism Conviction.
A naturalized United States citizen who was convicted in Israel for participating in a terrorist bombing was charged with immigration fraud, U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade announced today.
Joining McQuade in the announcement was William Hayes, Acting Special Agent in Charge of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations.
Special agents arrested Rasmieh Yousef Odeh, 66, at a Chicago-area residence after the unsealing of an indictment filed in federal court in Detroit. The indictment charges procurement of citizenship unlawfully. The indictment alleges that Odeh was convicted in Israel for her role in the 1969 bombings of a supermarket and the British Consulate in Jerusalem, which were carried out on behalf of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a designated terrorist organization.
According to the indictment, Odeh and others placed multiple bombs at the British Consulate and in a supermarket. One of the bombs placed at the supermarket detonated, killing two and injuring others. A bomb placed at the Consulate caused structural damage to the facility. Odeh was sentenced by Israeli military authorities to life imprisonment but was released after 10 years as part of a prisoner exchange, and she then returned to the West Bank.
The indictment alleges that in 1995, she immigrated to the United States and naturalized as a citizen in 2004. In her immigration documents filed in the United States, the indictment alleges, Odeh omitted her arrest, conviction, and imprisonment overseas, which were material facts for the United States government in determining whether to grant her citizenship.
“The United States will never be a safe haven for individuals seeking to distance themselves from their pasts,” said William Hayes, acting special agent in charge for HSI Detroit. “When individuals lie on immigration documents, the system is severely undermined and the security of our nation is put at risk.”
Bullshit. An imam in New Jersey was jailed for being part of Hamas and omitted it from his citizenship documentation but Chris Christie and other law enforcement officials have themselves undermined the system and fought aggressively to keep the Hamas member in the United States.
“An individual convicted of a terrorist bombing would not be admitted to the United States if that information was known at the time of arrival,” McQuade said. “Upon discovery that someone convicted of a terrorist attack is in the United States illegally, we will seek to use our criminal justice system to remove that individual.”
If convicted of the charge, Odeh will be stripped of her United States citizenship. She also faces a maximum sentence of 10 years for naturalization fraud.
Not to be confused with Yousseff Odeh, the Palestinian arrested in NYC selling cigarettes to fund jihad.
Friends say Odeh had been active in Palestinian causes and protests, and worked at the Arab American Action Network. They question why she was targeted, suggesting it may be her connection to people involved with the Committee to Stop FBI Repression.
3 years ago, 23 people in Chicago and Minneapolis had their homes raided by the FBI as part of an investigation into alleged support and funding of terrorist organizations in Palestine.
Hatem Abudayyah was among those and is Odeh’s boss.
“It’s ridiculous and we are very very angry, not only her colleagues, at the organization, but people across the city are already texting and calling and asking what they can do,” Abudayyah says.
Odeh left court with two nephews. Her attorney and friend say she has no other family here and was never married.
“She’s one of the nicest people,” says attorney Jim Fennerty. “She comes to my house on Christmas Eve, and spends time with my family, she’s just a wonderful person, she’s always caring. She always put yourself out to help people in the community, she’s not a threat to anybody.”