A Nigerian immigrant who arrived in the United States on a student visa in 2016 was charged with illegal possession of a firearm after the FBI uncovered he planned to travel to Gaza to wage "jihad."
In July, Moctar Gouroudja Ahmadou was apprehended after he visited a Houston-area gun range and allegedly fired an AR-15 assault rifle and handgun. Ahmadou has still not been reported publicly and there has been no official statement made by the U.S. Justice Department.
Last year, Navy sailors shot and killed a terrorist on a military base in Texas. The shooter's name was Adam Alsahli and he had been texting and conversing via WhatsApp with Ahmadou and seven others on the morning of the attack. It was proven in court that Alsahli acted alone in the military raid, but the messages they exchanged caused alarm and an investigation began into Ahmadou's motives in the U.S.
"Ahmadou would text Alsahli Quranic verses and at one point had asked him through an intermediary about 'an elephant in the room concerning jihad.' Ahmadou, an FBI agent testified during a recent detention hearing, 'wanted to know if he needed parents’ permission to commit jihad,'" The Daily Beast reported.
Ahmadou’s attorneys have declined a request for comment. Public defender Philip Gallagher argued that his client had not “actually not discussed ever doing anything harmful to anyone within the United States" and was not a danger to his community.
Ahmadou had previously downloaded sermons by ISIS spokesman Abu Mohammad al-Adnani, who once issued a call in 2014 for ISIS followers in the West to kill non-Muslims.
An FBI agent testified in July that the Bureau was “still investigating at this time" when prodded to issue a statement on whether Ahmadou was still under their eye.