N.J. jihad plot stopped just in time, feds say

first_imgChristie would not comment on the identities of the four other men in the video or say whether they are considered suspects. But he said the investigation was still going on. Authorities said one of the defendants, Tatar, worked at his father’s pizzeria and made deliveries to the base, using the opportunity to scout out Fort Dix for an attack. In an interview with AP on Wednesday, Tatar’s father, Muslim Tatar, 54, denied that his son had made deliveries to Fort Dix. However, Christie said the younger Tatar spoke of delivering pizzas on the tapes made by informants.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! NEWARK, N.J. – Federal authorities said Wednesday that the Muslim men suspected of plotting to massacre U.S. soldiers at Fort Dix were on the verge of carrying out their plan when they were arrested this week. “I think they were in the last stage of planning,” U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie said. “They had training, they had maps, and I think they were very close to moving on this. “Our view was they had pretty much gotten to concluding the planning phase of this and were looking to obtain heavy weaponry – and if not from us, they were going to try to obtain it elsewhere.” Members of the group were arrested Monday night in Cherry Hill, N.J., as they tried to buy AK-47 and M-16 assault rifles and other weapons from an FBI informant, authorities said. The men – four born in the former Yugoslavia, one from Jordan and one from Turkey – lived in Philadelphia and its suburbs with their immediate and extended families. Three were roofers, one drove a cab, and the two others worked at food businesses. The six – Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer, 22; Dritan Duka, also called Anthony or Tony Duka, 28; Shain Duka, 26; Eljvir “Elvis” Duka, 23; Serdar Tatar, 23; and Agron Abdullahu, 24 – were ordered held without bail. Three were in the United States illegally; two had green cards allowing them to stay in this country permanently; and the sixth is a naturalized U.S. citizen. Abdullahu was familiar with Fort Dix because it was the first place he landed when arriving in the United States as a refugee from Kosovo, according to a law enforcement officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. The United States allowed thousands of refugees into the United States after it intervened in the 1998-99 Kosovo war. Abdullahu arrived at Fort Dix as a teenager in 1999 as part of a group of about 4,400 refugees from Kosovo, officials said. The investigation began more than a year ago after a New Jersey store clerk was asked to transfer a videotape onto a DVD. The tape showed 10 men shooting weapons at a firing range and calling for jihad, prosecutors said. The 10 included the six men under arrest, authorities said. last_img read more