Man Receives 18-Year Prison Sentence in ISIS-Inspired New York City Plot
A Queens, New York, man who admitted to planning attacks in the New York metropolitan area on behalf of ISIS was sentenced in federal court to 18 years in prison on February 6. Munther Omar Saleh (right) pleaded guilty last year to conspiring and attempting to provide material support to ISIS, as well as for assaulting and conspiring to assault law enforcement officers. Saleh, 22, and co-defendant Fareed Mumuni, of Staten Island, attempted to help co-conspirators travel overseas to join ISIS and plotted to use pressure-cooker bombs to conduct attacks in New York City. The Statue of Liberty and Times Square were discussed as potential targets. Saleh was arrested on June 13, 2015, when he charged at a federal officer who was observing him. Saleh, who had faced as much as 53 years in prison, also received 10 years of supervised release. Mumuni, who was apprehended four days following Saleh’s arrest after repeatedly stabbing an FBI agent wearing protective body armor, awaits sentencing and faces up to 85 years in prison.
Arizona Man Faces Charges for Allegedly Selling Armor-Piercing Ammunition to Las Vegas Shooter
Federal charges were filed against an Arizona man accused of selling ammunition to the gunman in a Las Vegas shooting in October. A complaint filed by federal prosecutors on February 2 alleges Douglas Haig, 55, illegally manufactured and sold armor-piercing ammunition without being licensed. One of Haig’s customers was Stephen Paddock, who killed 58 people and injured 546 others when he opened fire at a music festival in Las Vegas on October 1. While searching Paddock’s hotel room, investigators found two unfired cartridges with Haig’s fingerprints and an Amazon.com shipping box addressed to Haig. Paddock bought more than 700 rounds of ammunition at Haig’s residence on September 19. The two men were unable to complete the bulk purchase when they met at a gun show in Phoenix, Arizona, more than a week earlier since Haig did not have sufficient inventory on hand. The complaint does not suggest Haig was aware Paddock planned the mass shooting. Haig also made at least 100 transactions via his online business, Specialized Military Ammunition, since July 2016.
ISIS Fan From Virginia Now Facing Prison After Lying to Military Recruiters
A Virginia man who hoped to join ISIS faces up to 15 years in federal prison after admitting he lied to military recruiters about travel to the Middle East. Shivam Patel, 28, of Williamsburg, pleaded guilty February 8 in US District Court to two counts of making false statements. Patel had tried to enlist in the US Army and Air Force in 2016, but did not disclose he had gone to Jordan in 2016 to connect with ISIS and join a “real Muslim Army,” according to court documents. Patel, a Hindu who had converted to Islam, also expressed admiration for a US Army officer who shot and killed 13 soldiers at Fort Hood, Texas, according to court documents. Patel had gone to China in July 2016 to teach English and became angered at how China treated Muslims. Instead of flying back to Virginia the next month, he went to Jordan, where he was arrested by Jordanian authorities, documents said. Upon returning to Virginia in September 2016, Patel sought to join the military, as well as police and fire departments, correctional facilities and probation offices.