Feds Bust Alleged N.Y. Airport Terror Plot
Ex-airport worker, ex-Guyana parliamentarian allegedly plotted to attack JFK.
June 2, 2007 — -- Authorities have arrested a former member of Guyana's parliament and a former cargo worker at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City who allegedly recruited an FBI informant to help blow up jet fuel lines at the airport, law enforcement officials told ABC News.
Investigators said the plotters intended to cause catastrophic event. Roslynn Mauskopf, U.S. attorney for the eastern disctrict of New York, called the plan to blow up the airport's main fuel supply line "one of the most chilling plots imaginable."
Chilling, maybe, but investigators said the plan was thwarted early and was not yet in an operational stage.
In all, three individuals, including the former Guyana parliament member, Abdul Kadir, and Russell Defreitas, a U.S. citizen and native of Guyana who worked as an airport cargo worker, have been charged with conspiring to attack JFK. Also in custody was Kareem Ibrahim, a citizen of Trinidad being held in Trinidad.
Authorities were seeking Abdel Nur, a citizen of Guyana. The United States is planning to seek extradition of suspects seized abroad.
According to the criminal complaint, the defendants performed physical surveillance, made video recordings of JFK and its buildings and facilities, located satellite photographs of JFK on the Internet and sought expert advice, financing and explosives.
The complaint added that an informant and Defreitas discussed the war in Lebanon in August 2006 and agreed, "Muslims always incur the wrath of the world while the Jews get a pass."
It was at that point, court records said, Defreitas shared with the informant "that he had a vision that would make the WTC attack seem small."
Officials viewed the alleged plotters as a credible threat, but sources said they apparently did not have the technical savvy to carry out the plot.
One official said the plan "was not technically feasible." Officials added that the alleged plotters had no explosives and had not yet figured out a way to get some.
New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said in some ways the plot was different than others.
"It's different in that it has ties to the Caribbean," he said, "and this is an area where we have growing concern and, I think, requires a lot more focus."
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