Defendant Arrested and Charged with Making False Statements to the FBI
BROOKLYN, NY—A complaint was unsealed this morning in U.S. District Court in Brooklyn charging Ehsanul Islam Sadequee, 19, a United States citizen, with making false statements to agents assigned to the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (“JTTF”) on August 18, 2005, at John F. Kennedy Airport, just prior to the departure of Sadequee’s outbound flight to Bangladesh. Sadequee was returned to the United States today in the custody of the FBI, after being temporarily detained by Bangladeshi authorities. This morning, Sadequee arrived in Anchorage, Alaska, where he was brought before a United States Magistrate Judge and ordered removed to the Eastern District of New York. Sadequee’s initial appearance in New York is scheduled for tomorrow morning, Saturday, April 22, 2006, before United State Magistrate Judge Arlene R. Lindsay, at the U.S. Courthouse, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York.
The complaint charges that on August 18, 2005, two JTTF agents consensually interviewed Sadequee at JFK Airport to determine where in Bangladesh, and perhaps beyond, he was traveling, his prior foreign travel, his associates and contacts, and other issues relevant to his trip and the agents’ investigation. In response, Sadequee falsely stated that in January 2005 he traveled alone to Canada and stayed with his aunt in Toronto. The complaint alleges that, in fact, Sadequee traveled to Canada on March 13, 2005, together with Syed Haris Ahmed, 21, of Atlanta, for the purpose of meeting with Islamic extremists, stayed with an individual with whom they were conspiring concerning travel to terrorist camps, and met with three subjects of an FBI international terrorism investigation and discussed strategic locations in the United States suitable for a possible terrorist strike. An indictment returned by federal grand jury in the Northern District of Georgia (Atlanta) was unsealed yesterday charging Ahmed with material support of terrorism. Ahmed is detained in federal custody.
“The charge against Sadequee is serious – the lies he told impact issues of national security and were material to an ongoing terrorism investigation,” said United States Attorney Mauskopf. “Both defendants now face federal charges, and the judicial process will run its course.” Ms. Mauskopf added that the investigation is continuing.
“There is no imminent threat to the United States or its residents stemming from this case,” stated Mark J. Mershon, FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge, New York Field Office. “The FBI is resolved to thoroughly investigate matters which pertain to our national security, and we will continue to work closely with our federal, state, and local partners in pursuing these significant investigations.”
If convicted of the false statement charge, Sadequee faces a maximum sentence of eight years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.
The charges in the complaint are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
This matter is being handled by Assistant United States Attorneys Kelly Currie and Colleen Kavanagh.
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