A “radical” Jordanian national living in Texas was allegedly plotting an attack on Houston’s Jewish community before he was arrested on gun charges.
Sohaib Abuayyash, 20, had been studying how to build bombs and posted about his support for killing Jews, federal officials claim.
“He has viewed specific and detailed content posted by radical organizations on the internet, including lessons on how to construct bombs or explosive devices,” FBI Director Chris Wray told the Senate Homeland Security Committee, though he declined to identify Abuayyash by name.
“And that defendant has made statements to others that support the killing of individuals of particular religious faiths.”
Abuayyash even allegedly made a direct reference in one social media post about an event in Houston for the Jewish community, according to court documents obtained by CNN.
It did not include details about the target and time of the alleged attack.
Abuayyash is behind bars on charges of unlawful possession of a firearm by someone with a non-immigrant visa, and US Magistrate Judge Christina Bryan has ruled he should remain detained pending trial.
She wrote in court documents that Abuayyash spoke of committing martyrdom in support of a religious cause and made statements “that he wants to go to Gaza to fight,” according to documents also obtained by CBS News.
Thank God that this man was detained and behind bars.
With antisemitism growing in America, the disaster that this man could have caused might have been catastrophic.
“In his communications with another individual about martyrdom, the Defendant referenced an event in Houston for members of a particular religious group,” the judge said.
Abuayyash was “plotting to attack a Jewish gathering,” a law enforcement source told CNN.
Since the October 7 Hamas attack on Israel, the FBI’s 56 field offices have been “leveraging every tool at our disposal to protect the American people from extremist violence,” one senior FBI official told CNN’s Josh Campbell last month, including by “monitoring sensitive collection.”
The latest joint bulletin from the DHS, the FBI, and the National Counterterrorism Center, obtained by CNN, states in their assessment “that lone offenders inspired by, or reacting to, the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict pose the most likely threat to Americans, especially Jewish, Muslim, and Arab communities in the United States.”
Because Abuayyash was actively training with pistols and assault weapons and allegedly discussed attacking a Jewish gathering in Houston, the FBI made the decision to move forward with the most immediate charge available – the illegal possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, according to the law enforcement source. This allowed the FBI to get Abuayyash into custody and for prosecutors to ask for him to be held without bail and continue the investigation in contemplation of bringing additional charges at a later date, the source said.
As Democrats fail to condemn Hamas terrorists, these sorts of radicals will continue to spread through our country.