News and Press Releases


November 29, 2005

ZAID MU'MIN, 32, of Puyallup, Washington, was sentenced to 57 months in prison and three years of supervised release in Tacoma today by U.S. District Judge Ronald B. Leighton for being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm. MU'MIN was arrested in November 2004 after a search of his home turned up four firearms. MU'MIN had two prior felony convictions and therefore was not allowed to possess any firearms. In sentencing MU'MIN Judge Leighton observed that MU'MIN was "an enigma wrapped in a mystery."

MU'MIN pleaded guilty to being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm on April 26, 2005. According to the plea agreement, an AK-47 rifle with scope, a Ruger .22 caliber semiautomatic pistol, a Glock .45 caliber semiautomatic pistol and a Browning .380 semiautomatic pistol were all found in MU'MIN's bedroom at his Puyallup home. The guns were registered to MU'MIN's wife. When questioned by agents, MU'MIN stated he thought the guns could legally be in the house as long as they were not registered to him. MU'MIN has felony convictions for First Degree Robbery (Snohomish County, 1992) and Felony Possession of Narcotics (King County, 1994) and cannot legally possess firearms.

At the sentencing hearing witnesses testified that MU'MIN had urged his comrads to get ready for jihad. The witnesses also discussed some of the materials found in MU'MIN's home that raise concerns about his intentions. The materials include numerous publications including: The Terrorist's Cookbook; The CIA's Secret Weapons Systems; CIA Improvised Explosives; Military Operations on Urbanized Terrain (U.S. Marine Corps); Ambush and Counter-Ambush (Canada National Defence); Sniper Training (Headquarters, Dept. of the U.S. Army); Silent Death; Deadly Doses, a Writer's Guide to Poisons. An FBI agent and a confidential informant testified that MU'MIN associated with individuals known by the FBI to advocate violent jihad against non-believers.

In asking Judge Leighton for a prison term, Assistant United States Attorney William H. Redkey, Jr. wrote that MU'MIN's association with those who advocate violent jihad combined with his violent and serious criminal history is cause for concern. "The combination of those factors could one day breed a terrorist mentality and for that reason alone the offense in this case must be taken very seriously."

Judge Leighton said he was convinced MU'MIN was not a terrorist, but said he did not mean by that to minimize the evidence of terrorist inclinations or that the court didn't have "serious questions on the subject." He said MU'MIN's explanations of why he had the guns and the alarming literature, "did not resonate with the court."

The case was investigated by the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) which contains agents from the FBI. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney William H. Redkey, Jr.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney's Office, Western District of Washington, at (206) 553-4110.

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