Last August, Siraj Ibn Wahhaj and four other adults were arrested in a remote complex in Taos, New Mexico. Siraj was wanted for taking away his disabled son Abdul-Ghani Wahhaj from his mother's home in Georgia and disappearing. It turned out that Siraj and the other adults lived together with 11 children in poverty. After arresting the adults and searching the enclosure, the authorities found Abdul-Ghani's body on what would be his fourth birthday. It is assumed that he died during a ritual of Islamic exorcism.
The accusations of pedophilia were finally abandoned against three of the five adults, but all five were subsequently arrested by the FBI with the arms accusation. The biggest question was whether the camp had been a training ground for some kind of terrorist attack. Prosecutors had initially stated that camp children were trained to shoot in preparation for a school shoot-out. Today, the Justice Department issued a press release stating that all five adults were charged with conspiracy to attack federal officials:
A federal grand jury sitting in Albuquerque, New Mexico, presented a Superseding exclusion on March 13 accusing Jany Leveille, 36 years old. Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, 40, Hujrah Wahhaj, 38, Subhanah Wahhaj, 36, and Lucas Morton, 41, with federal crimes related to terrorism, abduction and firearm violations …
"L & # 39 prosecution claims that the defendants conspired to provide material support in preparation for violent attacks against federal police officers and members of the army, "Attorney General Demers said. "Growing beliefs through terror and violence has no place in America, and the National Security Division continues to make protection against terrorism its top priority."
The exact nature of the plot is not explained in the press release, but there is a little more detail in the indictment:
Jany Leveille and Siraj Ibn Wahhaj instructed the people, including other occupants of the training camp, to be ready to engage in jihad, to die as martyrs and to perform violent acts, including federal killing Employees of the Bureau of Investigation, government officials and military personnel.
Finally, it is worth noting that Siraj Ibn Wahhaj is the son of a famous New York imam. When the arrests were made last year, he told CNN that his son was not a religious extremist:
Major Wahhaj disputed the characterization of his son's religious belief law as extreme. He said his son's behavior could be extreme. He described it as a tilt, the kind of person who got angry when he was stopped at the airport by immigration agents.
But "doing something extreme like this doesn't make sense", he said.
as if he was wrong about this. These were not just religious people living off the grid. These were (presumably) aspiring terrorists with their training camp and shooting range.