Luqman Ameen Abdullah, imam of the Masjid Al-Haqq mosque in Detroit, was being arrested on a raft of federal charges including conspiracy, receipt of stolen goods, and firearms offenses.The group was advocating the creation of a separate Islamic state within the US and sought to bring about its creation through violence; jihad.
Charges were also filed against 11 of Abdullah's followers. Eight were in custody Wednesday night awaiting detention hearings today; three remained at large.
A federal complaint filed Wednesday identified Abdullah, 53, also known as Christopher Thomas, as "a highly placed leader of a nationwide radical fundamentalist Sunni group." His black Muslim group calls itself "Ummah," or the brotherhood, and wants to establish a separate state within the United States governed by Sharia law, Interim U.S. Attorney Terrence Berg and Andrew Arena, FBI special agent in charge in Detroit, said in a joint statement.
"He regularly preaches anti-government and anti-law enforcement rhetoric," an FBI agent wrote in an affidavit. "Abdullah and his followers have trained regularly in the use of firearms, and continue to train in martial arts and sword fighting."
The Ummah is headed nationally by Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin, formerly known as H. Rap Brown, who is serving a state sentence for the murder of two police officers in Georgia.
The others charged are:
• Mohammad Abdul Salaam, also known as Gregory Stone, 45, of Detroit, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes and sale or receipt of stolen goods.
• Abdullah Beard, also known as Detric Lamont Driver, 37, of Detroit, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Abdul Saboor, also known as Dwayne Edward Davis, 37, of Detroit, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Mujahid Carswell, also known as Mujahid Abdullah, 30, of Detroit and Ontario, Canada, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Adam Ibraheem, 38, of Detroit, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Gary Laverne Porter, 59, of Detroit, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes and possession of firearms by a convicted felon.
• Ali Abdul Raqib, 57, of Detroit, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Mohammad Alsahi, also known as Mohammad Palestine, 33, of Ontario, Canada, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Yassir Ali Khan, 30, of Ontario, Canada, and Warren, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes.
• Mohammad Abdul Bassir, also known as Franklin D. Roosevelt Williams, 50, of Ojibway Correctional Facility, with conspiracy to commit federal crimes, sale or receipt of stolen goods, mail fraud, supplying firearms to felons, possession of weapons by a felon, and altering or removing motor vehicle identification numbers.
• A.C. Pusha, charged in a separate complaint late Wednesday with conspiracy to receive and sell stolen goods.
Salaam, Saboor, Porter, Beard, Ibraheem, Raqib, and Pusha all appeared in U.S. District Court in Detroit late Wednesday afternoon. Bassir is in state custody. Others charged are still at large.
Yesterday's raid seeking Abdullah's arrest was part of a 2-year investigation into the activities by his group.
A newspaper photographer was assaulted outside the mosque where Abdullah preached.
Witnesses said the men were on the porch at the Masjid Al-Haqq mosque when Ricardo Thomas, 67, began taking photos from across the street. Several pushed him, one threw a punch at him and his camera equipment was smashed.UPDATE:
Thomas was kicked while on the ground and suffered a cut lip. He drove himself to a hospital and said later "there was no reason" for the attack.
"It's a public street," Thomas said. "I am a journalist doing my job, just like all the other journalists doing their jobs."
Video on the incident.
A FBI press release is here, and provides a list of crimes alleged by the individuals listed above. It also requests knowledge of the whereabouts of the following:
At the time of this release, Mujahid Carswell, Mohammad Alsahi and Yassir Ali Khan were still at large. Anyone with information regarding the location of these individuals should contact the FBI at (313) 965-2323.