2007 John F. Kennedy International Airport attack plot


2007 John F. Kennedy International Airport attack plot

Infobox terrorist attack
title=2007 John F. Kennedy International Airport attack plot
location=New York City, New York, United States
target=John F. Kennedy International Airport
date=planned, never executed
time=
timezone=
type=Conspiracy
injuries=0
perps=
The 2007 John F. Kennedy International Airport attack plot was an alleged Islamist terrorist plot to blow up a system of jet fuel supply tanks and pipelines that feed fuel to John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in Queens, New York. These pipelines travel throughout the undergrounds of New York City in densely populated areas. The alleged plot was foiled when an undercover law enforcement official was recruited to the terrorist cell. The suspects are Russell Defreitas, a United States citizen and native of Guyana who was the alleged ringleader and worked for a time at the airport; Abdul Kadir, a citizen of Guyana and former member of the Guyanaese National Assembly; Kareem Ibrahim, a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago; and Abdel Nur, a citizen of Guyana and uncle of former world welterweight boxing champion Andrew "Six Heads" Lewis [http://www.newsday.com/search/am-guya0605,0,5350432.story] . Defreitas was a former employee of JFK and was arrested in Brooklyn, New York. Kadir and Ibrahim were arrested in Trinidad on June 3, 2007. Nur surrendered to police two days later in Trinidad [http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,278159,00.html] . On June 29 the four men were indicted on charges with conspiring to "cause death, serious bodily injury and extensive destruction" at the airport. [ [http://www.newsday.com/news/local/wire/newyork/ny-usjfk0630,0,3262071.story?coll=ny-top-headlines 4 indicted in terror plot to blow up JFK airport] , Newsday, June 29, 2007] . On August 6 a judge ordered three of the alleged plotters extradited to the United States [ [http://www.newsday.com/services/newspaper/printedition/tuesday/news/ny-wotrin075322999aug07,0,6202793.story Suspects in airport plot face extradition to U.S. Newsday August 7, 2007] ] .

On June 25, 2008 Kareem Ibrahim, Abdel Nur and Abdul Kadir were extradited to the United States. They pleaded not guilty to charges of trying to "cause greater destruction than in the Sept. 11 attacks". They men were ordered held without bail pending a hearing scheduled for August 7. Russell Defreitas is being held after an earlier not guilty plea. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/us/AP-Trinidad-US-Terror-Plot.html?scp=5&sq=Kennedy+Airport&st=nyt No bail for 3 suspects in JFK fuel line plot Associated Press June 25, 2008] ]

In a recorded conversation, Russell Defreitas allegedly told an informant that "Anytime you hit Kennedy, it is the most hurtful thing to the United States. To hit John F. Kennedy, wow.... They love JFK -- he's like the man. If you hit that, the whole country will be in mourning. It's like you can kill the man twice." [Citation | last1 = Faiola | first1 = Anthony | last2 = Mufson | first2 = Steven | pages = A03 | title = N.Y. Airport Target of Plot, Officials Say | newspaper = The Washington Post | date = 2007-06-03 | year = 2007 | url = http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/06/02/AR2007060200606_pf.html ] Defreitas had allegedly seen arms and missiles being shipped to Israel which he felt would be used to harm Muslims.

Extensive surveillance of the targets including the use of satellite photographs had been done and attempts had been made to reach out to another Islamist terrorist group. No explosives had been bought.

A New York City police source told Newsday that investigators are probing a possible Iran connection to the plot because Abdul Kadir planned to visit that country. In Trinidad, police reportedly are investigating whether Kareem Ibrahim had ties to Iraq and Iran [http://www.newsday.com/news/nationworld/world/ny-woguya075245030jun07,0,3475840.story?coll=ny-worldnews-print] .On August 6 it emerged that U.S. authorities will allege the plotters planned to seek help from Iran [ [http://www.newsday.com/services/newspaper/printedition/tuesday/news/ny-wotrin075322999aug07,0,6202793.story Suspects in airport plot face extradition to U.S. Newsday August 7, 2007] ] .

The informant in the case is a longtime cocaine dealer who cooperated with investigators after being convicted of possession of about $2 million worth of cocaine in 2003, according to court documents posted on thesmokinggun.com. The 36-year-old man is described in the documents as a onetime member of a violent drug gang first convicted in 1996 of selling cocaine and crack and being part of a conspiracy to murder a rival drug kingpin. The rival survived the attempted hit, according to the federal complaint in the drug trafficking and racketeering case. After the web posting according to FBI spokesman James Margolin. "We're concerned about the safety of the Source and are taking measures to safeguard him." [Carol Eisenberg, [http://www.newsday.com/news/nationworld/nation/ny-usinfo155256313jun15,0,1290.story?coll=ny-nationalnews-print JFK informant’s $2M cocaine arrest] , Newsday, June 15, 2007]

On June 25, 2008 Kareem Ibrahim, Abdel Nur and Abdul Kadir were extradited to the United States. They pleaded not guilty to charges of trying to "cause greater destruction than in the Sept. 11 attacks". They men were ordered held without bail pending a hearing scheduled for August 7. Russell Defreitas is being held after an earlier not guilty plea. [ [http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/us/AP-Trinidad-US-Terror-Plot.html?scp=5&sq=Kennedy+Airport&st=nyt No bail for 3 suspects in JFK fuel line plot Associated Press June 25, 2008] ]

The men are alleged to have named the plot "Chicken Farm". [ [http://www.nytimes.com/aponline/us/AP-Trinidad-US-Terror-Plot.html?scp=5&sq=Kennedy+Airport&st=nyt No bail for 3 suspects in JFK fuel line plot Associated Press June 25, 2008] ]

Controversy over the seriousness of the plot

A debate has emerged in the wake of plot about the seriousness of a threat this plot posed and how seriously foiled plots should be taken in general. Criticism has emerged to the statement by U.S. Attorney Roslynn Mauskopf that the plot could have "one of the most chilling plots imaginable," which might have caused "unthinkable" devastation. According to critics such as Bruce Schneier [Citation | last1 = Schneier | first1 = Bruce | title = Portrait of the Modern Terrorist As An Idiot | newspaper = Wired Magazine | date = 2007-06-14 | year = 2007 | url = http://www.wired.com/politics/security/commentary/securitymatters/2007/06/securitymatters_0614 ] the plot was never operational. The public had never been at risk. And the notion of blowing up the airport, let alone the borough of Queens, by exploding a fuel tank was in all likelihood a technical impossibility. Also cited are a portrait emerging of alleged mastermind Russell Defreitas as hapless and episodically homeless, and of co-conspirator Abdel Nur as a drug addict. The New York Times put the story of the plot on page 37 the day after the plot was announced. Rich Lowry, editor of the National Review writing in the New York Post, criticized the Times' decision saying "Foiled terror plots often will seem ridiculous and unlikely, especially when they are pre-empted" but should be taken seriously. Rep. Peter King former chairmen and member of the United States House Committee on Homeland Security dismissed criticism of law enforcement as "the price of success when you haven't been attacked in six years. We've gone from criticizing them for not doing enough immediately after 9/11 to now criticizing them too much." [http://rawstory.com/news/afp/Experts_cast_doubt_on_credibility_o_06042007.html] , [http://www.newsday.com/news/nationworld/nation/ny-ushype0606,0,6561947.story?coll=ny-top-headlines] [http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1628169,00.html] , [http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/04/business/media/04asktheeditors.html?bl&ex=1181361600&en=20edfabbc569e36f&ei=5087%0A] , [http://www.nypost.com/seven/06082007/postopinion/opedcolumnists/amateurs___not_opedcolumnists_rich_lowry.htm?page=0]

References

External links

* [http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSN0238499820070602 Four charged in plot to blow up JFK airport]
* [http://www.usdoj.gov/opa/pr/2007/June/07_nsd_401.html Four Individuals Charged in Plot to Bomb John F. Kennedy International Airport]
* [http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18999503/ 3 arrested in alleged airport plot]
* [http://washingtontimes.com/upi/20070602-114007-1802 Report: Feds bust JFK airport bomb plot]
* [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/americas/6715443.stm Arrests in NY airport 'bomb plot']
* [http://www.newsday.com/news/local/newyork/ny-nyterr035240989jun03,0,5385601.story?coll=ny-nynews-print JFK TERROR PLOT: three under arrest Newsday June 3, 2007]
* [http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/06/03/cbsnews_investigates/main2879630.shtml CBS News JFK Terror Suspects Face Extradition]


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