Feds Imprison Man in Terrorism Case; Targets US Military, Jewish Facilities
by Jim Kouri, CPP
A man recruited to join a domestic terrorist cell that was plotting to attack United Statesmilitary facilities, "infidels," and Israeli and Jewish targets in the Los Angeles area as part of a "jihad" was sentenced today to more than 12 years in federal prison, according to a report obtained by the National Association of Chiefs of Police.
Gregory Patterson, 24, of Gardena, California was sentenced to 151 months in prison by United States District Judge Cormac J. Carney. Last month, another man recruited into the terror plot, Levar Washington, 30, was sentenced to 22 years in prison.
Patterson and Washington pleaded guilty in December to conspiring to wage war against the United States and a weapons charge. Patterson also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess firearms in furtherance of a crime of violence
The man who organized the terror cell -- Kevin James, who formed the group he called Jam'iyyat Ul-Islam Is-Saheeh, or JIS, while in a California state prison -- also pleaded guilty last year to the terrorism conspiracy charge and is scheduled to be sentenced on February 9, 2009.
In plea agreements filed in federal court, James, Washington and Patterson admitted that they conspired "to levy war against the government of the United States through terrorism, and to oppose by force the authority of the United States government."
The fourth member of JIS named in an indictment -- Hammad Samana -- has been found unfit to stand trial and is currently receiving psychiatric care at a federal prison facility.
After forming JIS in 1997 while in state prison, James recruited Washington into the organization in late 2004 while both were prisoners at New Folsom Prison, where James had Washington swear an oath of loyalty and obedience to James and to JIS. After his release from prison several weeks after taking the JIS oath, Washington recruited Patterson and Samana into JIS and had them swear oaths of allegiance and obedience to JIS. After forming this cell, Washington and Patterson conducted about a dozen armed robberies of gas stations to obtain money for the group's planned attacks in the Los Angeles area.
Samana researched targets and prepared a document called "Modes of Attack." The document listed "LAX and Consulate of Zion," "Military Targets," "Army Recruiting centers throughout the county," "Military base in Manhattan Beach" and "Campsite of Zion."
After Torrance Police Department investigators linked Washington and Patterson to a gas station robbery, various Jihadist documents were found at a South Los Angeles apartment where they lived.
In addition to the "Modes of Attack" document, investigators discovered a document titled"Notoriety Moves," which contained a James-authored statement to be given to the media after a deadly attack.
The proposed press statement reads, in part, "This incident is the first in a series of incidents to come in a plight to defend and propagate traditional Islam in its purity." The document also warns "sincere Muslims" to avoid a series of targets, including "Those Jewish and non-Jewish supporters of an Israeli state."
The investigation into the terrorist conspiracy was led by the FBI's Long Beach Joint Terrorism Task Force, whose participating agencies include the Los Angeles Police Department; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement; the Torrance Police Department; the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department; the Long Beach Police Department; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; the Los Angeles Port Police; U.S. Customs and Border Protection; the U.S. Coast Guard Investigative Service; the Defense Criminal Investigative Service; the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and the Redondo Beach Police Department.
Jim Kouri, CPP is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police. He's former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed "Crack City" by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for a number of organizations. He's also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. He writes for many police and crime magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer, Campus Law Enforcement Journal, and others. He's appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com, Booksamillion.com, and can be ordered at local bookstores. Kouri holds a bachelor of science in criminal justice and master of arts in public administration and he's a board certified protection professional.