2 Iraqis in Ky. charged in terror plot

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An Iraqi national suspected of carrying out numerous bombing attacks against U.S. troops and another Iraqi citizen tied to insurgents there have been arrested and indicted in Kentucky on federal terrorism charges.

Waad Ramadan Alwan, 30, and Mohanad Shareef Hammadi, 23, both former residents of Iraq who now reside in Bowling Green, Ky., were charged in a 23-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Bowling Green, according to U.S. Attorney David J. Hale in Louisville.

Mr. Alwan is charged with conspiracy to kill U.S. nationals abroad; conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction against U.S. soldiers; distributing information on the manufacture and use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs); attempting to provide material support to al Qaeda terrorists in Iraq; and conspiracy to transfer, possess and export Stinger missiles.

Mr. Hammadi is charged with attempting to provide material support to terrorists in Iraq, as well as conspiracy to transfer, possess and export Stinger missiles.

Mr. Hale said the two men were arrested May 25 on criminal complaints and made their initial appearances Tuesday in federal court in Louisville. Each faces life in prison if convicted of all the charges.

Both men were closely monitored by the FBI in the months leading up to their arrests, Mr. Hale said, noting that neither is charged with plotting attacks within the U.S.

“Whether they seek shelter in a major metropolitan area or in a smaller city in Kentucky, those who would attempt to harm or kill Americans abroad will face a determined and prepared law enforcement effort dedicated to the investigations and prosecutions necessary to bring them to justice,” Mr. Hale said.

According to the charging documents, Mr. Alwan entered the U.S. in April 2009 and has lived in Bowling Green since. The documents said Mr. Hammadi entered this country in July 2009 and, after first residing in Las Vegas, moved to Bowling Green.

In September 2009, the FBI began an investigation of Mr. Alwan and used a confidential source to record conversations with him and, beginning in August 2010, with Mr. Hammadi.

Mr. Hale said that in a number of meetings, Mr. Alwan discussed his activities as an insurgent in Iraq from 2003 until his capture by Iraqi authorities in May 2006, including his use of IEDs and sniper rifles to target U.S. forces.

In one recorded conversation, Mr. Alwan said he obtained explosives and missiles while an insurgent in Iraq, that his insurgent group conducted strikes daily, and he used IEDs in Iraq hundreds of times, including against U.S. troops.

Asked whether he had achieved results from these devices in Iraq, Mr. Alwan allegedly replied, “Oh yes,” mentioning that his attacks had targeted Hummers and Bradley fighting vehicles.

According to the charging documents, the FBI has been able to identify two latent fingerprints belonging to Mr. Alwan on a component of an unexploded IED that was recovered by U.S. forces near Bayji, Iraq.

Mr. Alwan purportedly had advised the confidential source during at least one recorded meeting that he had lived in that area of Iraq and worked at the power plant in Bayji.

According to the documents, Mr. Alwan allegedly picked up machine guns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers from a storage facility in Kentucky and delivered them to a designated location, believing they would be shipped to al Qaeda in Iraq.

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