Plans Focused On Fuel Line That Feeds JFK
According to media
reports crdited to airport officials, four people were arrested in
a plot, which never got past the planning stages, to set off
explosives in a fuel line that feeds JFK and runs through adjacent
The four were charged with conspiring to attack the airport by
planting explosives to blow up the airport's major jet fuel tanks
and pipeline, according to claims made by the Justice
At a news conference, US Attorney Roslynn R. Mauskopf called
it "one of the most chilling plots imaginable."
"The devastation that would be caused had this plot succeeded is
just unthinkable," she said.
Homeland Security sources said the airport is not under threat
and that the attack, as planned, was "not technically
"There is no threat to air safety or the public related to this
plot," FBI spokesman Richard Kolko said in Washington.
The planning, which began last summer, involved four men and
targeted fuel tanks and pipelines at the airport, according to law
enforcement sources. The pipeline in question takes fuel from a
Linden, NJ, facility to the airport. Other lines service LaGuardia
and Newark Airports.
The four defendants were identified as Russell Defreitas, a US
citizen and native of Guyana who was arrested in Brooklyn.
According to Reuters, he was a former airport employee, and
described by their source as "a very angry Muslim
Officials added that two suspects were in custody in
Trinidad and Tobago, and identified them as Abdul Kadir, a citizen
of Guyana and former member of its parliament, and Kareem Ibrahim,
a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago.
The fourth was named as Abdel Nur, described as a citizen of
Guyana. Officials provided no other immediate information on Nur's
whereabouts, but said Kadir and Nur were associates of Jamaat Al
Muslimeen, which was behind a deadly coup attempt in Trinidad in
A wiretap transcript the
FBI gave CNN indicated the plotters targeted the airport because of
the popularity of its namesake.
"Any time you hit Kennedy, it is the most hurtful thing to the
United States. To hit John F. Kennedy, wow ... they love John F.
Kennedy like he's the man ... if you hit that, this whole country
will be mourning. You can kill the man twice," Defreitas said in a
"Even the twin towers can't touch it," referring to the
September 11 attacks in another comment that the law enforcement
authorities said was recorded last month. "This can destroy the
economy of America for some time."
Law enforcement authorities added that the investigation
was helped by an informant, who recorded the conversations with the
The plot, which dated from January 2006 to the present, tapped
into an international network of Muslim extremists from the US,
Guyana and Trinidad.
Official claim that the suspects had conducted surveillance
on the pipeline and JFK's giant jet fuel tanks; they had taken
surveillance video of the targets and took it to Trinidad to review
The plot was revealed when the planners tried to recruit help
from someone who was a law enforcement informant. Rep. Peter King,
R-NY, said law enforcement had had the plot "under control" for
"This was the ultimate hand-and-glove operation between NYPD and
FBI," said King.
Another law enforcement official said the plot was never "fully
The arrests mark the latest in a series of alleged homegrown
terrorism plots targeting high-profile American landmarks.