San Bernardino Gunman Plotted LA Attack With Neighbor in 2012 — But Got Cold …

10 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

California shooting shows difficulty ID’ing attackers.

The two San Bernardino shooters were radicalized at least two years ago — well before one of them came to the U.S. on a fiancée visa — and had discussed jihad and martyrdom as early as 2013, FBI Director James Comey said Wednesday in providing the most specific details to date about the couple’s path toward extremism.A congressional panel has made inquiries to the Treasury Department in recent days about regulations governing the online-lending industry in light of the San Bernardino, Calif., attack and a loan one of the alleged shooters took out before the massacre, according to a spokesman for the committee.

Syed Rizwan Farook and his wife, Tashfeen Malik, had gone undetected while planning the massacre that included amassing thousands of rounds of ammunition, high-powered guns and pipe bombs.The online romance between Southern California terrorists Farook Rizwan Syed and Tashfeen Malik was more a meeting of like minds than lonely hearts, with two radical jihadists forming a bond of hate and bloodlust in the dark recesses of the Internet. Investigators are also looking at whether the husband accused in the shootings was planning an attack in 2012 but abandoned those plans, according to two people familiar with the investigation who were not authorized to discuss the matter publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. Malik declared allegiance to Daesh in a Facebook post around the time of the shooting last week, which led authorities to conclude that it was a terrorist attack. A hundred percent prevention is not achievable.” The couple, who lived quietly in a two-bedroom townhouse with their 6-month-old daughter and Farook’s mother, had not come to the attention of law enforcement before clothing themselves in black, donning face masks and bursting into an annual festive meeting of Farook’s county health department colleagues with guns blazing.

Syed Rizwan Farook, the U.S.-born husband of Tashfeen Malik, a Pakistani national, took out the loan from the San Francisco-based company in the weeks before the shooting, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday. The government source declined to identify whom Farook spoke with about a possible attack, but added that “the question is whether anyone knew about the attack last week or had knowledge of any other earlier plots.” The time frame would roughly coincide with the time that Farook’s friend and neighbor, Enrique Marquez, legally purchased two of the semiautomatic rifles that Farook and Malik used to carry out the attacks at the Inland Regional Center. The New York Times has reported that Marquez had converted to Islam a few years ago and state documents showed that he was connected to Farook’s family by marriage. David Bowdich, chief of the FBI’s Los Angeles office, told reporters the agency was searching for how and where radicalization occurred and who might have led them to those beliefs.

A spokesperson for confirmed to that while Farook has an inactive profile not in public view, Malik never belonged to the site and they have no history of any such name or details. Investigators believe Malik radicalized before meeting Farook, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said Tuesday, though she didn’t elaborate on what led the FBI to that conclusion. In his profiles, Farook described himself as a “devout” Muslim and added that he spends “much free time in the [mosque] memorizing the Quran and learning more about the religion.” As for Malik, she was an online ghost, and experts said absent her participation in hardcore jihadist chat forums or use of a pseudonym, it is unlikely that she met Farook innocently. Marquez, who worked at a Walmart Supercenter in Corona, California, has not been arrested in the case but he was questioned by the FBI on Tuesday and his family home was raided over the weekend. Malik, the shooters in last week’s massacre, had been radicalized for “some time,” the Federal Bureau of Investigation said Monday, adding that it is still sifting through clues.

With authorities trying to uncover the origins of their relationship and trying to trace a digital trail the pair tried to destroy, the FBI has revealed that Farook was at least “in contact” with international terrorist organizations, including Al Qaeda. America’s counterterrorism infrastructure has had success flagging individuals who try to travel abroad to fight alongside militants, fund operations overseas or who communicate online with overseas terrorists. Marquez attended prayers at the Islamic Society of Corona-Norco four or five years ago, but he did not attend regularly, according to Yousuf Bhaghani, president of the facility’s board of directors. But it’s been far more challenging for law enforcement to identify each and every individual who self-radicalizes online, a process the Islamic State has facilitated with slick Internet propaganda aimed at the disaffected. “They’re not communicating with a terrorist organization, they’re not doing those other things that we have typically looked for when we’re looking for terrorists,” said John Cohen, a former Homeland Security Department counterterrorism coordinator.

I am in such pain that I cannot even describe it.” The father, Gulzar Ahmed Malik, has been a resident in the kingdom since the early 1980s, the Saudi Interior Ministry says. Several Pakistani community leaders in Southern California called it “highly unusual and rare” in their culture for a wife to be older than her husband, even if by only a year. But sudden withdrawal from friends or family, for instance, starts hitting trip wires when combined with other actions, such as increased visits to hate-spewing chat rooms or radical change in appearance. Yet family members and co-workers say Farook traveled to Saudi Arabia in July of 2014 and “returned with a wife” that no U.S. relatives claim to have previously known.

Authorities told Fox News it is extremely unusual for a Pakistani woman, especially from a conservative Islamic home, to travel overseas on a fiance visa – unless it was part of a plan. When they identify someone they think is predisposed to violence, they’ve turned to a range of techniques — including sting operations involving informants and inoperable weapons and placing undercover agents in chat rooms — as part of their investigation. Even before they met, Malik was crafting a low-profile, casting further skepticism on the notion she was actively seeking a husband through traditional matchmaking websites, or the pretense in which she was looking for a spouse. There are no signs that Prosper is suspected of any wrongdoing or negligence in its handling of the situation, nor is it clear whether its role providing a loan to Mr.

Friends who knew Malik at Bahauddin Zakariya University in Multan, Pakistan, where she studied pharmacology from 2007 to 2012, told the Washington Post that in 2009, she started adopting a militant and strict adherence to religion, refusing to be photographed and deleting existing photographs in the university database. That guidance, known as the Domestic Investigations and Operations Guide, permits agents to check out a citizen’s suspicion even when there’s minimal factual basis for doing so. Citing religious tradition, Farook family lawyers said Syed did “not want others to talk” to Malik, and associates recall Farook clamming up whenever his spouse came up in conversation.

In a statement earlier this week, Prosper said: “As part of our standard procedures, we…confirm that all loan funds are disbursed into a verified U.S. bank account in the borrower’s name. Federal investigators are now poring over two hard drives found at their Redlands home, including one which sources said was “smashed pretty well.” Two damaged cell phones found in trash cans near the home may also yield clues. Like all Americans, Prosper is shocked and saddened by recent events in San Bernardino.” Prosper finds prospective borrowers and sells loans they take out through its website to investors but doesn’t directly extend any credit. Though Comey declined to answer questions about whether encrypted communication had been used before the attack, he did use the appearance to reiterate his longstanding concerns that criminals, terrorists and spies can use encryption applications on their smartphones to evade detection from law enforcement.

However they met and whomever may have brought them together, the picture that is now emerging is one of two hardcore radicals brought together by their mutual desire to kill in the name of radical Islam. Given their movements once together in the U.S., and the arsenal of weapons, ammunition and bombs they accumulated in their home, it seems clear that everything they did was in preparation for the carnage they wrought last week. “There is no doubt Malik was a committed jihadi, whether she was actually under the direction of anyone, or simply received encouragement from radicals remains to be seen,” said Del Wilber, a former U.S. intelligence operative and current military counter-terrorism trainer. “Were they possibly trying to build some sort of ‘cover’ bona fides?

The two gunmen were shot dead by police. “We have no idea what he said because those messages were encrypted,” Comey said. “And to this day, I can’t tell you what he said with that terrorist 109 times the morning of that attack. The Utah Department of Financial Instutions, which regulates WebBank, said all banks chartered in the state are subject to oversight that includes examinations to assess whether the bank is complying with all applicable banking laws and regulations, including “requirements designed to combat terrorism, money laundering, and other financial crimes.” Mr.

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