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Two more arrested in UK as part of TX synagogue terror attack investigation

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Two more individuals have been arrested as part of the investigation into Malik Faisal Akram, the man who took hostages at a Texas synagogue last weekend. U.K. terrorism police announced Thursday that the additional individuals were arrested.

Two different teens were detained in South Manchester just one day after Akram’s terror attack in Colleyville, Texas. The teens were released Wednesday without charges after three nights in custody, reports Fox News.

Greater Manchester Police shared an update from the Counter Terrorism Policing North West, that the men arrested for questioning Thursday morning were in Birmingham and Manchester.

Fox News states “several reports” said the two teens detained were Akram’s sons, but police have not confirmed that. Terrorism police have also searched a North Manchester address as part of the investigation.

U.K. terrorism police say they are continued to “support U.S. authorities with their investigation into the events in Texas” and will further “liaise with and support colleagues from other forces.”

Domestically, the FBI has stated its investigations are extending to London and Tel Aviv in order to determine if Akram acted alone or as part of a larger terror cell. During the 11 hour hostage standoff, Akram demanded the release of Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani terrorist in prison in Ft. Worth, known as “Lady Al Qaeda.”

Akram also reached out to a New York City-based Rabbi, Angela Buchdahl, who runs Reform Judaism. Akram wanted her to “use her influence to persuade authorities to release Siddiqui from prison” reports Fox News. Buchdahl told her congregation she had never had any prior connection to Akram.

Among the investigations into Akram, authorities are trying to figure out how he managed to travel to the U.S. last year. He reportedly flew into New York’s JFK, but he had a criminal record that went back decades, and was on the U.K.’s terror watch list for his extreme beliefs.

Akram was raised by his Pakistani parents in Lancashire, England, which is among the many Muslim communities in the U.K. experiencing radicalization. Once in Dallas, Akram stayed at Dallas-area homeless shelters in the days leading up to the hostage incident.

A pastor says he witnessed Akram being “dropped off” at one of the facilities by a man who hugged him and clearly appeared to know him. The pastor handed over video and photos to the FBI.

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  1. John Bayer

    January 21, 2022 at 3:44 pm

    “Among the investigations into Akram, authorities are trying to figure out how he managed to travel to the U.S. last year. He reportedly flew into New York’s JFK, but he had a criminal record that went back decades, and was on the U.K.’s terror watch list for his extreme beliefs.”

    Government fails. It screws up. And that’s a less-paranoid response than might be given.

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National Security

Army’s First Trans Officer Indicted for Spying for Russia

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The U.S. Army’s first transgender officer and his wife, a Maryland doctor, are making headlines. No, not for breaking any ideological woke barriers; for “allegedly attempting to transfer confidential military medical information to Russia.”

The two were charged in an eight-count indictment on conspiracy charges Wednesday. Major Jamie Lee Henry, who lived with his anesthesiologist wife Anna Gabrielian, was granted his request to officially change his name in accordance with his gender preference in 2015.

Henry and Gabrielian allegedly volunteered to “retrieve private medical records from the United States Army and Johns Hopkins in order to assist the Russian government.”

National Review reports:

The pair are accused of stealing patient health files from Johns Hopkins and Fort Bragg and giving them to an individual they believed to be working for the Russian government. They aimed to show that they could access classified information and readily provide it to Moscow to demonstrate their allegiance, according to the indictment.

However, the individual to whom they hoped to deliver the information was an undercover FBI agent. At a covert August 17 meeting, Gabrielian told the agent that she was devoted to helping Russia’s cause even if it cost her her job or landed her in prison. She arranged a subsequent meeting with Henry and the agent, still believing him to be affiliated with the Kremlin.

That evening, in the agent’s hotel room, Henry expressed that he was committed to supporting Russia and had considered enlisting in the Russian army after the invasion of Ukraine. However, he told the agent he was disqualified because he didn’t have any “combat experience.”

“The way I am viewing what is going on in Ukraine now, is that the United States is using Ukrainians as a proxy for their own hatred toward Russia,” Henry reportedly told the agent.

“Prior to Henry’s case, identifying as a sex different than the one on one’s birth certificate made a soldier unfit for military service, warranting discharge” writes National Review.

Gabrielian worked at the Johns Hopkins school of medicine, and Henry worked as a staff internist stationed at Fort Bragg.

If convicted, the two could face up to five years in federal prison for the conspiracy charge, and a maximum of ten years in federal prison for each count of publishing secret military medical records.

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