(LOS ANGELES) — Federal authorities announced on Monday that four men from Southern California are in custody after being charged with attempting to kill Americans overseas.
Sohiel Omar Kabir, a naturalized citizen and former U.S. Air Force member, is being detained in his native Afghanistan while Ralph Deleon, Miguel Alejandro Santana Vidriales and Arifeen David Gojali are being held in Riverside, Calif.
According to the criminal complaint, Deleon, Santana and Gojali had plans to meet up with Kabir in Kabul this month in order to join al-Qaeda and the Taliban.
They are facing a long list of charges, including conspiracy to kill, kidnap, maim, or injure persons and damage property in a foreign country; killing and attempting to kill officers and employees of the United States; and killing nationals of the United States.
It’s alleged that Kabir had introduced Deleon and Santana to commit “violent jihad” in 2010 and Gojali was recruited later. Kabir has been overseas for the past year.
The plot was uncovered by the FBI through an informant. Deleon, Santana and Gojali were arrested last Friday by members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force without incident.
The defendants each face a statutory maximum sentence of 15 years in prison if convicted.
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