Who is Cholo Abdi Abdullah? Cholo Abdi Abdullah Bio/Wiki
According to a recently unsealed federal indictment, federal prosecutors in Manhattan have charged a Kenyan man with planning a Sept. 11-style assault on a building in an American city. The man, Cholo Abdi Abdullah was an operative for Shabab, a Somali terrorist group identified as the largest and most active global affiliate of Al Qaeda, Manhattan prosecutors said.
The DOJ’s press release announced that “The Department of Justice announced the unsealing of an indictment charging Cholo Abdi Abdullah with six counts of terrorism-related offenses arising from his activities as an operative of the foreign terrorist organization al Shabaab, including conspiring to hijack aircraft in order to conduct a 9/11-style attack in the United States”
TERROR PLOT INDICTMENT: A Kenyan man was indicted on terrorism charges in New York City Wednesday morning
Federal prosecutors say Cholo Abdi Abdullah was a member of the terror group Al-Shabab and trained as a pilot to stage a 9/11-style attack on a U.S. building pic.twitter.com/5fcR9RTcSQ
— Norah O’Donnell 🇺🇸 (@NorahODonnell) December 16, 2020
He is 30 years old.
9/11-Style Hijacking Full Details
Cholo Abdi Abdullah was reportedly part of an al-Shabaab team and took orders directly from an African terror group commander, one who was previously responsible for coordinating a deadly hotel assault in Nairobi in 2019, prosecutors said. Audrey Strauss, Acting Manhattan U.S. Attorney, said in a statement, “This chilling callback to the horrific attacks of September 11, 2001, is a stark reminder that terrorist groups like al Shabaab remain committed to killing U.S. citizens and attacking the United States,”
Breaking! Cholo Abdi Abdullah, Kenyan man who “obtained pilot training in Philippines” plotted 9/11 style attack on behalf of al-Qaeda (prior to arrest). https://t.co/osl36N7QFj @SecurityJourno @ravindiren pic.twitter.com/w7OUA33xLf
— JC Rivera (@JCRivera03) December 16, 2020
Officials state that he was doing research as possible targets on American skyscrapers – but it was not immediately clear if any New York landmarks were on his list.
In July 2019, Filipino news outlets widely reported his arrest, but at the time the specifics of the alleged plot were not clear. According to the website Rappler, when he was arrested, Abdullah had a bomb and bomb-making supplies.
Cholo Abdi Abdullah from Kenya, #AlShabaab terrorist charged in New York Federal court yesterday for plotting to hijack commercial aircraft.He was recruited into AS together with Ismael Shosi&Riziki, Gichunge,Osman who died in #Dusit2 attack. AS is a death trap. Millicent Omanga pic.twitter.com/WXWHvZFeDp
— Mohamed Juma (@modi_juma) December 17, 2020
Kenyan Cholo Abdi Abdullah, who authorities believe has ties to the international terror group Al Qaeda, is now under the custody of CIDG in Camp Crame after his arrest in Iba, Zambales. | via @maan_macapagal pic.twitter.com/jzpBoQUrTr
— ABS-CBN News (@ABSCBNNews) July 3, 2019
Mr. Abdullah, who was detained last year by the Philippine authorities, was brought to the United States on Tuesday, the authorities said, and on Wednesday he was arraigned in Manhattan Federal District Court. He pleaded not guilty to the six-count indictment, and he was ordered held by a magistrate judge, Robert W. Lehrburger.
Cholo Abdi Abdullah Obtained Pilot Training and Researched How to Hijack Aircraft in Order to Conduct a 9/11-Style Attack at the Direction of al Shabaab. pic.twitter.com/BnVEtQFCxw
— Kenya West© (@KinyanBoy) December 16, 2020
Mr. Abdullah’s charges include conspiracy to kill Americans, to commit aircraft piracy, to destroy aircraft, and to commit acts of terrorism that go beyond national borders. He could face life imprisonment on certain counts if convicted.
Mr. Abdullah’s attorney, Jill R. Shellow, said that after the trial, she had no comment.
On Monday, 1 July 2019 Kenyan national Cholo Abdi Abdullah was in his room in the Rasaca Hotel in the city of Iba, northwest of Manila, when he was arrested. In his possession, police found a pistol, a homemade bomb and a hand grenade. Yet Abdullah’s primary aim involved a plane pic.twitter.com/novG6rKolq
— Tore Hamming (@ToreRHamming) December 16, 2020