Update: Man arrested by Joint Terrorism Task Force in Rochester

Updated: 06/02/2014 5:39 PM
Created: 06/02/2014 11:50 AM WHEC.com

A Rochester restaurant owner is accused of plotting to kill soldiers as they returned home to our area. The owner of MoJoe’s on Clinton Avenue was arrested by an FBI task force this weekend

The suspect, Mufid Elfgeeh, was arraigned on federal charges in Rochester Monday morning. He was arrested over the weekend at the Hudson Avenue Walmart. The government says Elfgeeh is a terrorist who was planning to kill U.S. troops returning home to western New York.

Elfgeeh was arrested by the FBI and members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force Saturday at the Walmart parking lot on Hudson Avenue. He was arrested after police say he bought two guns, both equipped with silencers, from a government informant. The U.S. Attorney's Office says Elfgeeh had plans to use those weapons on members of the military in Rochester.  

U.S Attorney William Hochul said, “Mr. Elfgeeh expressed on numerous occasions his interest in killing American servicemen as they are returning home from the war zones. He also spoke about also hurting members of the Shi’a Muslim community in Rochester.”

According to the criminal complaint, Elfgeeh told the FBI informant, “I'm thinking about just buying a big automatic gun from off the street or something and a lot of bullets and just put on a vest or whatever and just go around and start shooting". 

Also in the complaint, Elfgeeh tells that informant that he would target members of the U.S. Army, including a customer of his at MoJoe's saying, “Even if we do 20 or 30 people slowly".

Investigators say he laid out his plan where he would kill his victims. 

Elfgeeh said, "I could just go back and wait for him to when he leaves to go to his garage and just walk up slowly, boom, boom, boom, inside his garage." 

News10NBC asked the U.S. Attorney's Office how long Elfgeeh has been on their radar and how they were tipped off. He would not give specific, but did say the public and social media aided in their investigation. 

Hochul said, "It was in the Twitter accounts where Mr. Elfgeeh expressed support for al-Qaida and wanting to assist them in a number of different ways.”

The government is requesting Elfgeeh continue to be held without bail, saying he's dangerous and a flight risk. He has a detention hearing scheduled for June 16.

Click here to read the complaint

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