You would think that the arrest of six jihadis in Minneapolis would relieve the Muslim Somali in Minnesota community, the largest in the United States. Instead, it has created tension and animus. What side are they on?
A Minneapolis man was charged Friday with threatening law enforcement officials and writing on Twitter that a “massacre” would happen if authorities did not free six men who were arrested earlier this week and accused of trying to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State group, Midnimo.com reported.
“Mpls. Man Charged with Making Threats in Islamic State Group Case,” By: Joe Augustine, KSTP, April 25, 2015
A Minneapolis man is accused of threatening federal agents, the U.S. Attorney in Minnesota, and a criminal informant who assisted in the arrest of six men accused of trying to join the Islamic State terrorist group in Syria.
Mahamed Abukar Said was charged in federal court Friday after posting a series threats on his Twitter page, according to an FBI affidavit.
The tweets have since been deleted but investigators used screen grabs to capture the threatening messages. They claim to have linked the Twitter account to Said using past tweets, a phone number and information from the Division of Vehicle Services.
One tweet said, “Ima whack that US attorney general.” Investigators believe he meant either U.S. Attorney Andrew Luger, who held a press conference about the arrests earlier in the week, or the assistant U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting the case.
Another tweet said, “The feds are getting two choices. Either they gon free my bros or they gon have a massacre happen then they gon take me too.”
Said is also accused of trying to retaliate against an informant who aided the federal investigation.
Said’s attorney did not return a call for comment Friday night. Said will be detained until a hearing next Wednesday.
The arrests of the six men, all of Somali descent, created tension in Minnesota’s Somali community, the largest in the United States. Since 2007, more than 22 young Somali men have traveled from Minnesota to Somalia to join the militant group al-Shabab. Authorities have also said a handful of Minnesota residents have traveled to Syria to fight with militants in the past year.
The six men were charged after a 10-month investigation that was aided by recordings made by a man who once planned to travel to Syria himself, but then decided to cooperate. Court testimony about the use of an informant, along with the judge’s decision to detain the men, prompted angry reaction from some of the roughly 200 local Somalis who attended Thursday’s hearing.
Meanwhile, a man accused of trying to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State group will be sent from California to Minnesota to face charges.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Karen S. Crawford in San Diego signed a warrant for the removal of Mohamad Farah.
The FBI arrested Farah and Abdurahman Daud last weekend in San Diego. They are among the six men charged in a criminal complaint unsealed Monday with conspiracy to support a foreign terrorist organization. The four others were arrested in Minnesota and authorities say the six are friends.
The complaint says the men planned to reach Syria by going to nearby countries from Minneapolis, San Diego or New York City.
A hearing is scheduled for Daud in San Diego on April 30.