Fazliddin Kurbanov, 30, was arrested Thursday morning in Boise, Idaho, as part of a federal terrorism investigation. Federal terrorism charges were filed Thursday afternoon in Boise and Salt Lake City, Utah. Kurbanov, an Uzbekistan national, legally present in the United States, was living in Boise at the time of his arrest.
A federal grand jury in Boise returned a three-count indictment charging Kurbanov with one count of conspiracy to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization, one count of conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists and one count of possessing an unregistered destructive device.
A federal grand jury in Salt Lake City returned an indictment charging Kurbanov with one count of distribution of information relating to explosives, destructive devices and weapons of mass destruction.
The charges were announced by David B. Barlow, U.S. Attorney for the District of Utah; Wendy J. Olson, U.S. Attorney for the District of Idaho; John Carlin, Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security at the U.S. Department of Justice; and Mary Rook, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Salt Lake City Division.
The arrest was the culmination of an investigation by the FBI’s Salt Lake City Division, which covers Idaho and Utah; and Joint Terrorism Task Forces (JTTF) in Idaho and Utah, which include a number of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.
Kurbanov’s activities were closely monitored by federal agents during the investigation and any potential threat posed by Kurbanov has been contained. Kurbanov is scheduled to make his initial appearance in federal court in Boise tomorrow. He will be transferred to Utah at the conclusion of the prosecution in Idaho.
“Today’s arrest and these indictments underscore our commitment to aggressively and thoroughly investigate those who conspire to engage in unlawful terrorist activities,” said U.S. Attorney Olson. “The thorough and exhaustive work of our JTTF, in partnership with our investigating and prosecuting partners in Utah, Colorado and at the National Security Division, put a stop to this criminal activity and ensured the public’s safety. I commend the men and women at every level of law enforcement, including the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, Ada County and Canyon County Sheriff’s Offices and the Boise City Police Department, who assisted in this effort.”
“One of our highest priorities is disrupting potential acts of terrorism. The coordinated investigation, arrest, and indictments in this case demonstrate the commitment of all involved to do just that. The tireless work of agents, analysts and law enforcement officers to detect and guard against acts of terrorism has helped ensure the safety of the communities they serve,” U.S. Attorney Barlow said today. “The judicial part of the process will now begin in Idaho and Utah.”
“Today’s arrest underscores the need for continued vigilance against terrorist threats both at home and abroad. I thank the many agents, analysts and prosecutors responsible for this important investigation,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Carlin.
“As always, the FBI’s top priority is the safety and security of our nation and its citizens. The indictments and arrest are the result of months of exhaustive investigation on the part of agents, analysts, and officers who worked indefatigably to achieve that end,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Rook.
The Idaho indictment alleges in count one that between August 2012 and May 2013, Kurbanov knowingly conspired with unnamed co-conspirators to provide material support and resources to the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, a designated foreign terrorist organization. The indictment alleges that the material support and resources included himself, computer software and money.
In count two, the indictment further alleges that the defendant conspired to provide material support and resources, including himself, to terrorists knowing that the material support was to be used in preparation for and in carrying out an offense involving the use of a weapon of mass destruction.
The indictment also alleges in count three that on or about Nov.15, 2012, Kurbanov possessed a destructive device consisting of a combination of parts intended for use in converting any device into a destructive device and from which a destructive device could be readily assembled. According to the indictment, the parts were a hollow hand grenade, hobby fuse, aluminum powder, potassium nitrate and sulfur.
If convicted on the Idaho charges, Kurbanov faces a maximum of 15 years in prison on each of the conspiracy counts and 10 years in prison on the possession of an unregistered destructive device count. The Idaho charges are being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Aaron Lucoff and Heather Patricco and National Security Division Trial Attorney Larry Schneider.
The one-count indictment filed in Utah alleges that from about Jan. 14, 2013, continuing through Jan. 24, 2013, Kurbanov taught and demonstrated how to make explosive devices and distributed information relating to the manufacture and use of an explosive or weapon of mass destruction with the intent that the teaching, demonstration and information be used for, and in furtherance of, an activity that would constitute a federal crime of violence.
The indictment alleges the defendant showed internet videos, conducted instructional shopping trips, provided written recipes and gave verbal instructions on where to obtain the necessary components to construct and use improvised explosive devices. The indictment also alleges that Kurbanov intended that the videos, written recipes, verbal instructions and shopping trips be used for training in the construction and use of explosive devices to commit a crime of violence, such as the use of weapons of mass destruction; bombings of a place of public use, a public transportation system or infrastructure facility; or destroying a building in interstate commerce.
If convicted on the Utah charge, Kurbanov faces up to 20 years in federal prison.
The Utah charges are being prosecuted by U.S. Attorney Barlow, Assistant U.S. Attorney John W. Huber and National Security Division Trial Attorney Larry Schneider.
An indictment is not a finding of guilt and is not evidence. Individuals charged in an indictment are presumed innocent unless or until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
(If you have questions regarding the Idaho case, please call Pam Bearg, PIO in the Idaho U.S. Attorney’s Office, at 208-334-1211. For questions on the Utah case, please call Melodie Rydalch, PIO in the Utah U.S. Attorney’s Office at 801-325-3206. Questions for the FBI Salt Lake City Division can be directed to Public Affairs Specialist Deb Bertram at 801-579-1400 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.)