Seven North Carolina men have been charged with plotting to wage "violent jihad" by "murdering, kidnapping or maiming persons" overseas. According to a federal indictment unsealed today, the alleged ringleader, Daniel Patrick Boyd, and six co-defendants were accused of conspiring to provide financial and material assistance to terrorists abroad. The indictment does not allege the men planned to attack targets within the U.S.
Detention hearings for Boyd and the other six defendants arrested have been scheduled for July 30, 2009.
Boyd had traveled extensively in Pakistan and Afghanistan between 1989 and 1992, where he received military training in terrorist training camps, according to the indictment.
According to officials briefed on the case, Boyd was believed to be armed when he would leave his home and is also believed to have broken away from local mosques years ago. He allegedly taught his own Islamic courses at his home and held services there.
Prosecutors say over the last three years, Boyd and his co-defendants raised funds and weapons to assist terror efforts and recruited homegrown extremists to travel abroad to wage jihad. Two of Boyd's sons, Dylan and Zakariya, were charged with taking part in the alleged conspiracy.
"These charges hammer home the point that terrorists and their supporters are not confined to the remote regions of some far away land but can grow and fester right here at home. Terrorists and their supporters are relentless and constant in their efforts to hurt and kill innocent people across the globe. We must be equally relentless and constant in our efforts to stop them," said U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding.
The FBI and Justice Department have filed their intention to use information obtain by secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act wiretaps in the case.
Authorities say Boyd and several of the other defendants traveled to Israel in June of 2007 in a failed attempt to conduct terrorism activities. After returning to the U.S., Boyd was able to successfully train and fund a recruit to travel to Kosovo last July to wage jihad, according to the indictment.
FBI agents raided Boyd's home in Caswell County, NC today, where authorities believe he had stockpiled automatic weapons and trained recruits.
"The threat that extremists and radicals pose to America and our allies has not dulled or gone away," said Owen D. Harris, Special Agent in Charge of the Charlotte Division of the FBI. "These arrests today show there are people living among us, in our communities in North Carolina and around the US, that are honing their skills to carry out acts of murder and mayhem."