Report: Najibullah Zazi in Plea Negotiations, FBI to Question Zazi's Father

Update: Zazi's father was allowed to go home after three hours of questioning. At 4:45 pm, Najibullah Zazi is still there.

ABC News is reporting:

The Aurora man under FBI investigation for alleged ties to a New York bomb plot, has admitted he has ties to al-Qaida and is in negotiations to plead guilty to a terror charge, a senior law enforcement official told ABC News. The official said Zazi had received explosives training and his possible guilty plea would be part of a deal to cooperate with the government.

The report says Zazi made the admissions this morning. The NY Daily News has a similar account. [More..]

Lawyers for Najibullah Zazi, 25, were negotiating with federal officials for an agreement where he could admit receiving military training - but deny plans to injure any Americans, sources familiar with the case said.

His lawyer denies the report. But, his lawyer also says the FBI now wants to question his father, Mohamed Zazi, who lives with Zazi at the home searched Wednesday. More here.

And, his lawyer now has an outside PR firm speaking for him.

The spokesperson, Wendy Aiello, says Zazi's father met with FBI agents at 1 p.m. The family has been fully cooperating with the FBI. She added that she does not know how long the interviews will last and that updates will be available when she gets them.

Wednesday and Thursday, Zazi and his lawyer drove to the federal building for Zazi's interrogation sessions with the FBI. This morning, the FBI picked Zazi up at his apartment in a black SUV's with tinted windows that entered the building's underground parking structure.

The FBI has also been returning to various places, including storage unit facilities, showing photos of Zazi and three other persons who appear to be Middle Easterners.

"This week, they came back with four pictures, one of the same individual that's being interviewed by the FBI right now and three others, women and a man. But they never rented here. So we talked and he left," storage facility manager Harvey Boardman said.

I hope the reports are false. If true, it looks like Zazi handed himself over on a silver platter. And probably has a big target on his back as a result of all his cooperation.

18 U.S.C. Sec. 2339(D) "Receiving military-type training from a foreign terrorist organization" carries a ten year sentence.

Update: All the local news stations are now reporting similar news. CBS points out he's admitting ties to terrorism but not to a terror plot. A local Fox station cites DOJ sources:

Department of Justice sources tell FOX News that Zazi is negotiating a plea agreement on unspecified terrorist-related charges.

Prior Posts:

< Why Rockefeller Says No To BaucusCare | Najibullah Zazi to Return for Day 4 of Questioning >
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  • Display: Sort:
    True or not... (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 03:02:34 PM EST
    ...he's hosed either way.  

    Handing himself over might have been (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by scribe on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 03:06:43 PM EST
    his best (or least worst) option.  The big bulls-eye on his back and all the publicity seems to be the work of the FBI (more likely, IMHO, the result of interagency rivalry), such that his cooperation is being turned into something of minimal value.  Any other rabbits they might have been looking for have likely long since bolted.

    And, as to having a big bullseye on himself, that might actually work to his advantage - he'd be pretty hard for the government to disappear into a secret prison now.  Getting out of the government's hands alive will likely make him a local hero if/when he is deported.

    Hey, I guess I am sunk too on those standards. (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Gerald USN Ret on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 04:20:00 PM EST
    Received military training?
    Received explosives training?

    Received CBRN training?
    Learned the "spirit of the bayonet?"

    Yes to all of the above doesn't make me a terrorist.

    And if raised in another country it probably would not have been Uncle Sam who trained me.

    Uh, the trainers (none / 0) (#12)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 08:10:18 PM EST
    just happen to be a group that want to kill Americans...

    You think that might be a little on the shady side?


    you don't know who he trained with (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 11:53:59 PM EST
    or why. Let's withhold the judgments of Zazi please, particularly when reports are coming from unsourced officials.

    I quote from ABC News (none / 0) (#16)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Sep 19, 2009 at 09:10:58 AM EST
    which is quoted in the post (above).

    The Aurora man under FBI investigation for alleged ties to a New York bomb plot, has admitted he has ties to al-Qaida and is in negotiations to plead guilty to a terror charge,

    I'm uncomfortable with this, too (none / 0) (#14)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 11:43:24 PM EST
    Going off for training is not infrequently part of a sort of fantasy life for young men especially.  I'm not crazy about making that a serious crime.  Seems that often enough, going off for training and confronting the reality probably kills the ardor rather than enhances it.

    I guess if I could do it my way, I'd make it a crime so people who do it could be investigated in some depth, but not with such a drastic penalty if that's all there was to it.

    I'm also still haunted by the fact that one of Bush's infamous heightened terror alerts turned out to be based on the fact that a Pakistani kid living in this country went back to Pakistan to meet a potential bride, and his emails to friends in the U.S. announcing the wedding plans were assumed to be code for some imminent attack.  Turned out they weren't, he was just happily announcing wedding plans.


    Well, at least this guy is not being represented (5.00 / 2) (#10)
    by magster on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 05:58:57 PM EST
    by Orly Taitz.

    If it's true, and the admission is true, (none / 0) (#1)
    by andgarden on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 02:47:11 PM EST
    it seems like something highly irresponsible for ABC to report.

    If it's true, and the admission is true (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by steviez314 on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 03:11:22 PM EST
    they hooray for regular police work, standard interrogation techniques, and the FBI, instead of rendition, torture and CIA contractors.

    You are comparing apples and oranges (none / 0) (#11)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 08:06:20 PM EST
    no he's right on target (none / 0) (#13)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 08:14:53 PM EST
    and please keep this thread to a discussion of the Zazi case.

    If true... (none / 0) (#2)
    by kdog on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 03:00:47 PM EST
    I like my crow medium-rare:)...unless he just thinks he just can't win and this is his easiest out...people admit to things they did not do all the time to get out of the law and order ringer.

    If true... (none / 0) (#6)
    by magster on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 03:49:17 PM EST
    ...how much of the surveillance relied on abhorrent FISA provisions and how will this influence the re-ratification of the Patriot Act.  I hope the investigation was an "old-school" pre Patriot Act one, or we will be stuck with a Swiss Cheese constitution for a much longer time.

    A big target on his back that (none / 0) (#8)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 05:28:25 PM EST
    who would shoot at?

    those he cooperated against (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Sep 18, 2009 at 05:46:11 PM EST
    The media in New York and Denver have been announcing for three days that he has been providing information about his associates and travels. Usually the feds try to keep that under wraps for the safety of their cooperator.

    B of A and Citibank funded the terrorists (none / 0) (#17)
    by WC Varones on Sat Sep 19, 2009 at 09:40:00 AM EST
    What kind of banks lend tens of thousands of dollars unsecured to 20-year-old foreign coffee cart workers with no assets?

    Bank of America and Citibank, that's what kind of bank.