Patterico's Pontifications

11/10/2007

New York Paper Reports That L.A. Drug Ring Was Funneling Money to Hezbollah

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,Terrorism — Patterico @ 7:41 pm



The New York Daily News reports on an important Los Angeles story:

WASHINGTON – A seemingly small-time drug ring busted this week in Los Angeles was actually targeted for funding the Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, the Daily News has learned.

Prosecutors left out the terror tie when they announced Tuesday that federal agents and local cops had arrested a dozen people for allegedly peddling cocaine and counterfeit clothing in Bell, Calif.

But several sources familiar with the investigation said the predominantly Arab-American gang was believed to have smuggled its crime cash to the Iranian-backed terror group.

“This was a classic case of terrorism financing, and it was pretty sophisticated how they did it,” a source close to Operation Bell Bottoms told The News.

Where is the Los Angeles Times on this? Close to nowhere. The paper reported on the arrests the other day, and dropped a couple of very veiled suggestions that there could be a terrorism connection. But the hints were as opaque as they could possibly be:

The focus of the federal investigation was Ali Khalil Elreda, 32, who was detained at Los Angeles International Airport last year, accused of trying to smuggle $120,000 in money orders and cashier’s checks, hidden in a child’s toy, to Lebanon, according to an indictment and an affidavit filed in the case.

In 2005, a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department official showed a Senate committee a picture of a tattooed shop owner who had been arrested the year before on charges of selling counterfeit high-fashion merchandise. The tattoo was a symbol of Hezbollah, the Iranian-backed guerrillas operating in Lebanon.

. . . .

[T]wo law enforcement sources said Tuesday that the merchant was Elreda.

The article also makes veiled allusions to a five-year-old interview with Asa Hutchinson in which he mentioned investigations in progress, including a “methamphetamine ring allegedly tied to Hezbollah.” The current ring is a cocaine ring.

It’s like the paper was told about the connection, but didn’t report it for some reason. So they just hinted at it.

Or maybe the New York paper just has better sources?

9 Responses to “New York Paper Reports That L.A. Drug Ring Was Funneling Money to Hezbollah”

  1. Yemenis, Palestinians, and Jordanians dominated the pseudoephedrine trafficking from about 1997 on. Hutcheson was talking about pseudo trafficking, not meth trafficking. The Arabs’ role generally ended with selling the pseudo to Mexican drug cartels that did the meth manufacturing.

    I could write about 50,000 words on this subject — I was in on the ground floor prosecuting those cases beginning in April 1997.

    wls (a6fede)

  2. Mort Zuckerman is willing to label them “terrorists” without proof?

    Shocking.

    alphie (99bc18)

  3. A very real reason why LA cops want to locate and more closely get to know the muslim community in the area? Not only to try and get informants in but maybe to protect people who don’t want any of it but are “traditionally isolated” is how the the LAPD spokesman put it..who maybe don’t think there is a way out.

    EdWood (35ac97)

  4. EEEEEnteresting.

    See Dubya (d4aa96)

  5. I read Debbie Schulsses (sic) a few times per week and she has stated repeatedly that the Detroit Free Press is basically a Muslim mouth organ and that Dearborn is simply Wahabbi West. The Times (like all media) has been silenced for fear of lawsuits which the Muslim “community” has no reticence filing. Note that this wasn’t on TV either (so far as I know I only hit a local website from time to time). These terrorist front groups are operating without fear of prosecution or media focus.

    Howard Veit (4ba8d4)

  6. The OC Register omitted terror connections as well. Didn’t want to alarm us I guess!

    Meanwhile, what is the media doing to protect loyal Americans like Summer K.?

    Patricia (f56a97)

  7. What I want to know is why hasn’t the government gone in and broken up those “Islamic villages” dotting the country, particularly the Appalachians, out in the backwoods, which are apparently little more than terrorist training camps.

    chaos (9c54c6)

  8. When you criminalize drugs, you create a revenue stream for criminals.

    Jason Sonenshein (bb3470)

  9. How sen can they get shot at dawn without some liberal judge stopping the exicution?

    krazy kagu (e778bf)


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