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CAIR-LA: The FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation within Muslim Communities

CAIR-LA: The FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation within Muslim Communities

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Published by: CEInquiry on Sep 21, 2012
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In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Council on American-Islamic Relations
Greater Los Angeles Area Chapter
2180 W. Crescent Ave, Suite F, Anaheim, Ca 92801Tel: 714.776.1847 Fax: 714.776.8340 socal@cair.com
The FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation withinThe FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation withinThe FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation withinThe FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation withinMuslim CommunitiesMuslim CommunitiesMuslim CommunitiesMuslim Communities _______________________________________ _______________________________________ _______________________________________ _______________________________________
Annotated Source List: News Articles and Cases Reported to CAIR 
 
Treating Muslims as Suspect:Treating Muslims as Suspect:Treating Muslims as Suspect:Treating Muslims as Suspect:
The FBI has been monitoring individual Muslims, mosques and Islamic organizations, questioningindividuals at their homes or at work, and even pursuing individuals’ families and friends, oftenwithout evidence that these individuals or institutions are involved in illicit activity. The result is thatMuslims are increasingly afraid to go to their houses of worship, to speak freely or become involvedin Islamic organizations and events. They are pursued, harassed and presumed suspect solelybecause they are Muslim. In most cases, no charges are ever made. When charges are made, theyfall under immigration or document fraud, tax evasion, and lying to federal officers, though the casesare often touted as victories against “terrorism.” Such ethno-religious profiling appears to have beeninstitutionalized when the Department of Justices’ agency guidelines, which took effect on December1, 2008, lowered the threshold for beginning investigations on individuals and allowed race andethnicity to be factors in opening investigations.
Use of InfUse of InfUse of InfUse of Informants and Agentormants and Agentormants and Agentormants and Agentssss Provocateurs:Provocateurs:Provocateurs:Provocateurs:
The FBI has used informants and agents provocateurs to infiltrate mosques, befriend and provokeworshippers into making incriminating statements, or induce vulnerable Muslims into discussing illicitactivity. Informants are both Muslims hired to spy within mosques and community organizations, aswell as people with criminal backgrounds posing as Muslims. They are paid and/or rewarded basedon the amount of information they produce; therefore, these informants are inclined to exaggerate,instigate and fabricate cases of a “terrorist” nature.
Agency RAgency RAgency RAgency Recruitmentecruitmentecruitmentecruitment of Muslimsof Muslimsof Muslimsof Muslims as Informantsas Informantsas Informantsas Informants and Retaliation:and Retaliation:and Retaliation:and Retaliation:
The FBI has recruited and attempted to recruit Muslims to work as informants within the Muslimcommunity. They may use secondary questioning by Customs and Border Protection, reports made toFBI by law abiding Muslims trying to help law enforcement, or contacts made through “fishingexpeditions” to recruit Muslims. In doing so, they have often used threats of prosecution ordeportation or promises of large payoffs to get Muslims to spy on their own community. For someindividuals who have refused recruitment, there is startling evidence that the FBI has actuallyretaliated against them.
*
Case details are based on reports made to CAIR by complainants. Full details of the cases are kept withCAIR to protect the identity of the people involved.
 
Council on American-Islamic Relations—Greater Los Angeles Area
The FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation within Muslim Communities 
 
Last Revised: 3/26/2009, CAIR-LA
2 |Page 
ContentsContentsContentsContents
Treating Muslims as Suspect 
.......................................................................................................................3
Articles
.....................................................................................................................................................3
Cases
........................................................................................................................................................4
Use of Informants and Agents Provocateurs 
.............................................................................................6
Articles
.....................................................................................................................................................6
Cases
........................................................................................................................................................7
Agency Recruitment of Muslims as Informants and Retaliation 
...............................................................7
Articles
.....................................................................................................................................................7
Cases
........................................................................................................................................................9
 
Council on American-Islamic Relations –Greater Los Angeles Area
The FBI’s use of Informants, Recruitment and Intimidation within Muslim Communities 
 
3 |Page 
Treating Muslims as SuspectTreating Muslims as SuspectTreating Muslims as SuspectTreating Muslims as Suspect ______________________________________ ______________________________________ ______________________________________ ______________________________________
ArticlesArticlesArticlesArticles
OC Muslims say FBI Surveillance Has a Chilling Effect 
By Teresa Watanabe and Paloma EsquivelLos Angeles TimesMarch 1, 2009http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/california/la-me-muslim1-2009mar01,0,1456958.story 
This article discusses the FBI’s intrusion into mosques in Southern California. Since it createsa climate of fear, many refrain from attending the mosque as frequently as they may have inthe past. Also, many give fewer contributions, out of fear that the charitable organizationmight come under scrutiny of the FBI.
Is Big Brother at Your Mosque? 
By Abdussalam MohamedInFocus NewsMarch 2009http://www.infocusnews.net/content/view/15942/135/ 
This article deals with the fear and suspicion in Muslim communities after various cases of FBIintrusion have come to light. Local Muslim leaders discuss the discrepancy between lawenforcement and FBI agents wanting to work with the community and their spreading fearand undermining the positive work of Muslims.
FBI Creates Climate of Fear 
EditorialOrange County RegisterMarch 22, 2009http://headlines.ocregister.com/articles/fbi_18893___article.html/mosques_fear.html 
This editorial outlines the danger of the FBI’s sending informants to infiltrate mosques and toentrap Muslims, and the danger of presuming the entire Muslim community as naturallysuspect. The editor states that, while he understands law enforcement’s need to utilizeundercover agents, he cannot “fathom the justification for fishing expeditions andentrapment.” The result is that law-abiding Muslims are discouraged from engaging inconstitutionally-protected activities for fear of who may be listening. The editor furtherrecommends that the “FBI should supposedly work with American Muslims in the event of aterrorist threat, not treat them as adversaries by creating fear of surveillance withinmosques.”

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