He’s a volunteer for the ICNA – a terror-linked organization whose leader was sentenced to death for war crimes.
An auto mechanic with ties to Manchester and Windsor who is charged with making false statements to FBI agents during a terrorism investigation made “unexplained cash deposits” to his bank account averaging $25,000 per year from 2007 to 2015, according to a federal agent’s affidavit.
Fareed Ahmed Khan, 60, who lists his address in property tax records as 30 Hudson St. in Manchester, “does not appear to have a legitimate source for these cash deposits,” wrote Special Agent Christopher Evans of Homeland Security Investigations.
He added that Khan’s main source of income is his job as a mechanic at an automobile service chain, for which he is paid about $34,000 a year by direct deposit.
Between November 2010 and August 2015, 13 deposits to Khan’s bank account came from outside Connecticut, including money from Texas, California, and British Columbia, Canada, according to the agent.
“After reviewing Khan’s bank accounts, the FBI could not conclusively determine the source of the funds that were deposited,” the agent wrote in the August 2017 affidavit.
More than $49,000 from the cash deposits appears to have gone to two eBay accounts to pay for 140 items — all but eight described as medical or surgical equipment — from December 2012 to September 2015, according to the agent.
Khan paid for and received the items, but authorities believe they were selected by a person — whose name the agent knows but didn’t include in the affidavit — who lives near Islamia College in Karachi, Pakistan.
When the purchases arrived at Khan’s Manchester home, the agent wrote, Khan repackaged them and sent them to the person in Karachi, using two names the agent believes to be false in the addresses.
On May 15, 2015, the U.S. Postal Service intercepted two of the packages and found they contained “surgical endoscopy equipment, which was consistent with the ‘Misc. Hospital equipment’s’ description listed on the shipping label,” the agent wrote.
Khan was born in Karachi but immigrated to the United States and was naturalized as a U.S. citizen in 2003.
In 2014, an FBI informant attended a “family day” at an amusement park sponsored by an Islamic charitable organization.
The informant found Khan working at a ticket counter, wearing a scarf with pictures of a mosque on one side and of an Israeli flag with an X over it on the other, the agent reported, adding that it was identical to scarves Palestinian protesters were wearing around that time.
Khan told the informant that if one can’t participate in jihad, one should support it with money — and that he was doing that, according to the agent. The agent acknowledged in a footnote that jihad can mean “inner struggle,” but argued that the context indicated that Khan was referring to “violent jihad.”
Khan is accused of making false statements to the FBI during an interview conducted with his lawyer present on June 26, 2015.
The statements included that he wasn’t associated with the Islamic Circle of North America, a related charity called ICNA Relief, or two other organizations, Helping Hands and Helping Hand for Relief and Development, according to the indictment in the case, returned Sept. 6. He is also accused of saying falsely that the only packages he had sent to Pakistan contained clothing and went to his brother and sister.
Khan’s lawyer, Faisal Gill of Washington, D.C., wrote in an email to the Journal Inquirer, “Mr. Khan did not lie at all to the FBI. There is no evidence of terrorism at all. This is only happening to Mr. Khan because he is Muslim” and of Pakistani descent. Khan is free on $50,000 bond while the case is pending in U.S. District Court in New Haven.
Khan, who became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2003, is well known in Connecticut’s Muslim community for his charity and fundraising work with Islamic Circle, said Refai Arefin, imam of the Islamic Association of Greater Hartford.
Khan does not have radical political beliefs, and the idea that he would be linked to terrorism is “impossible,” said Arefin, who is also an attorney.
“I think there are political interests in pursuing Islamic organizations,” he said. “They have investigated ICNA, probably hundreds of times. If the government had any evidence against ICNA, they would have pursued a case against them, but they obviously don’t. So, I think they are going after their volunteers. That’s what this case is.”