American Airlines mechanic who allegedly sabotaged plane has ISIS ties, prosecutor says

NBC News 2 months ago

A Miami aircraft maintenance worker who allegedly tampered with an American Airlines plane over the summer has possible terrorist ties with the Islamic State, prosecutors said in court Wednesday.

Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani, 60, is being held without bond after a judge ruled that Alani posed a flight risk after prosecutors argued that the mechanic had a brother who was a member of ISIS.

Alani, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Iraq who has worked as an airline mechanic for 30 years, allegedly had ISIS propaganda on his phone, Assistant U.S. Attorney Maria Medetis said. A video depicting people being shot was allegedly sent from his phone. Alani also told the individual he sent the video to that he wanted Allah to cause harm to non-Muslims, prosecutors say.

Two witnesses also told prosecutors that Alani mentioned to them he had a brother who was in ISIS, but gave conflicting accounts according to the prosecutor.

An American Airlines coworker claimed that Alani said he had to go to Iraq to visit a brother who was a member of ISIS, but a roommate alleged Alani said he had to go because his brother was kidnapped.

Investigators found no evidence of the brother being kidnapped on the phone, nor did prosecutors provide evidence of a brother in ISIS.

Alani has not been charged for a terrorism-related crime.

Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani appears in federal court in Miami
Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani appears in federal court in Miami on Sept. 6, 2019.

Alani was charged earlier this month with willfully damaging, destroying, disabling or wrecking an aircraft for allegedly tampering with an "air data module" on a passenger plane.

A flight crew noticed an error related to the plane's system on July 17 and called off an American Airlines flight from Miami to Nassau, Bahamas, with 150 people on board.

Alani allegedly used super glue to attach a piece of foam into an inlet on the air data module, which reports information like an aircraft’s speed, pitch and other data, according to court documents.

An affidavit from a federal air marshal said that Alani tampered with the plane merely in hopes of obtaining overtime pay.

His attorney Christian Dunham, a federal public defender, said as an experienced mechanic Alani knew the sabotage would keep the aircraft from flying and, even if it did take off, there are redundancies built in that would have kept it safe.

"We don't think they are going to be able to prove he intentionally put people in danger," Dunham said. "The plane would have been fine to fly."

Alani has been fired from his job at the airline and the Federal Aviation Administration recently revoked his certificate as an aircraft mechanic. He is expected to enter a plea at another hearing Friday.


Source link
Read also:
Business Insider › Automobile › 2 months ago
The American Airlines mechanic accused of sabotaging a plane over a labor contract pleaded not guilty on Friday, days after possible connections to terrorists were raised by prosecutors. The mechanic, Abdul-Majeed Marouf Ahmed Alani, has not been...
USA Today › Traveling › 2 months ago
The American Airlines mechanic says he tampered with a plane carrying 150 people in hopes of earning overtime; not because of terror ties.
ABC News › 2 months ago
Prosecutors in Miami said Wednesday an American Airlines mechanic accused of sabotaging a jetliner had an ISIS video his cell phone.
Fox News › Incident › 2 months ago
A federal judge on Wednesday denied bail to an American Airlines mechanic accused of sabotaging a jetliner in July over possible links to the Islamic State.
Fox News › 2 months ago
An American Airlines mechanic accused of sabotaging a plane in July reportedly told arresting agents he had an “evil side,” a nefarious persona prosecutors sought to expose Wednesday as they presented alleged evidence of his Islamist sympathies...
ABC News › Finance › 2 months ago
A former American Airlines mechanic who prosecutors say may have some links to terrorists is due to enter a plea to charges that he sabotaged an aircraft with 150 people aboard
CNN › 2 months ago
The American Airlines mechanic accused of trying to sabotage a commercial airliner before takeoff was denied bond and will be held in custody until trial, a judge ruled Wednesday.
Forbes › Lifestyle › 1 day ago
What are the most unusual airlines in the world? Some airlines such as hooters and nude express have created unusual airlines. Air travel has become bigger and more efficient than ever. Can you smoke on a plane? Gambling on a plane? Naked on a plane...
USA Today › Traveling › 2 months ago
Prosecutors say the American Airlines mechanic has made concerning statements and has a brother who may be tied to the Islamic State extremist group.
CNN › 2 months ago
A former American Airlines mechanic accused of trying to sabotage a commercial airliner entered a plea of not guilty on Friday.
Sign In

Sign in to follow sources and tags you love, and get personalized stories.

Continue with Google
OR