Los Angeles, CA — Federal officials have reported four men have been charged with an alleged terror plot against American citizens overseas and on United States soil. The men are from Southern California and had plans to join al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan. According to FBI spokeswoman, Laura Eimiller, plans included bombing public places including government facilities.
According to the Associated Press, the men’s names and ages were released when the federal complaint was unsealed on Monday. The men include Sohiel Omar Kabir, 34; Ralph Deleon, 23; Miguel Alejandro Santana Vidriales, 21; and Arifeen David Gojali, 21.
The accused men used Facebook, as well as other websites, as some of their mediums to express their extremist views:
“In one online conversation, Santana told an FBI undercover agent that he wanted to commit jihad and expressed interest in a jihadist training camp in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.”
The complaint outlined Kabir’s use of a deceased al Qaeda leader’s doctrine of Anwar al-Awlaki and that he introduced it to Deleon and Vidriales. The report further indicates his alleged travels to Afghanistan to meet with Deleon and Vidriales to plan for a meeting with Kabir’s terrorist contacts. It was not clear until later on that Gojali was added as the fourth member of this group.
No reports have been released yet indicating if any of these men have asked for or received legal counsel. The four men charged with this alleged terror plot could face federal prison time with a maximum penalty of fifteen years each if they are convicted of the alleged terrorist crimes.