FBI arrests Georgia man who wanted to attack White House, synagogue

His targets also included the Statue of Liberty, according to reports.

By MARCY OSTER/JTA
January 17, 2019 17:21
1 minute read.
FBI headquarters building is seen in Washington, U.S., December 7, 2018

FBI headquarters building is seen in Washington, U.S., December 7, 2018. (photo credit: YURI GRIPAS/REUTERS)

 
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A Georgia man arrested in an FBI sting operation who had planned to attack the White House also wanted to blow up a synagogue.

Hasher Jallal Taheb, 21, of Cumming, Georgia was arrested Wednesday and is charged with “attempt to damage by means of an explosive any building owned, possessed, or leased by the United States or any department or agency,” US Attorney Byung J. Pak said in a statement.

His targets also included the Statue of Liberty, according to reports. The synagogue was not named.

Local law enforcement contacted the FBI about Taheb in March, after receiving a tip from a community member that the man had become radicalized, the FBI said. He was arrested after a nearly year-long investigation by FBI Atlanta’s Joint Terrorism Task Force.


Taheb met several times with an undercover FBI agent, one time showing him a hand-drawn diagram of the ground floor of the West Wing of the White House including a plan for an attack, and one time asking the agent to obtain weapons and explosives needed for the attack, according to reports based on the affidavit.

He also said he wanted to record a video to motivate supporters. The video, Taheb told the undercover agent, would show clips of oppressed Muslims and show American and Israeli flags burning in the background, according to the affidavit.

Taheb was arrested on Wednesday when he and the undercover agent picked up the weapons and explosives from a second undercover agent.

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