FBI on alert for possibly smuggled illegal aliens who may be involved in nuclear plot
Officials in Boston are dealing with a possible nuclear terror threat after receiving word that a number of illegal aliens were smuggled into the U.S., and would be headed to the Massachusetts capital, possibly with nuclear material.
Teams of police officers were said to be prowling city streets with radiological sensors after receiving information of a possible dirty bomb.
According to the Boston Herald, a man from Mexico called authorities in California to tell them of the smuggling and potential nuclear threat.
“They got a call from across the border in Mexico to the California Highway Patrol and he said he brought two Iraqis and four Chinese (individuals) across the border and according to him, they stated soon to follow behind them would be some sort of material,” a law-enforcement source told the Herald.
“He refers to some sort of nuclear material that will follow them through New York up into Boston.”
The source said the caller didn’t identify himself and failed to show up for a meeting with federal authorities in California, but he did leave pictures of four Chinese men along with some names at a drop site on the Mexico-California border.
“They were dropped by the source at a location. He literally threw them over a fence from Mexico to the U.S. side,” the source told the paper. “There are pictures of the four Chinese and some names but just how accurate they are remains a question.”
Four suspects have been identified as Zengrong Lin, Wen Quin Zheng, Xiujin Chen and Guozhi Lin. None of them appeared on any terrorist watch list.
Law enforcement in Massachusetts was first notified of the threat at 5:30 a.m. through the FBI and Boston Police Joint Terrorist Task Force.
Local officials took the matter seriously enough to meet with representatives of the CIA, FBI, and Homeland Security, according to a high-ranking city official.
“They are desperately trying to piece it together,” the official told the Herald, adding it’s “very scary” if the threat is real.
Explosive-sniffing dogs are reportedly being deployed to search for a “dirty bomb,” according to a New York City official.
According to the Associated Press, FBI spokeswoman Gail Marcinkiewicz said the terror alert had not been raised for Boston.
“Basically, what you have here is information that we often get,” she told AP. “It’s uncorroborated at this time. It’s been passed on to our law enforcement partners and we’re working it aggressively.”
Deputy Chief Paul MacMillan of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority told AP an alert bulletin has been issued to its officers, as well as subway, train, and bus-station workers to be on the lookout for the individuals.
“There is no specific threat or target indicated,” he said.
Gov. Mitt Romney returned to Massachusetts after traveling to Washington, D.C., where he had planned to attend the inauguration of President Bush.
“The source is anonymous,” Romney told reporters. “But it is specific in that it mentions a location where individuals were dropped off – the location is New York – and it identifies a location where a threat might be directed in – the location is Boston.”
The investigator talking to the Herald said much of the information sounds far-fetched.
“A lot of it doesn’t make sense and some of it does,” the source said. “It’s totally uncorroborated. This all began several days ago as a series of phone calls and they don’t know who the caller is. There are some parts of it that just don’t make sense and other little pieces of it that fall into place. The information is these people that came into the country are going to New York into Boston and the (nuclear) material will follow them.”
There’s speculation the caller could have been ripped off by illegal aliens he helped cross the border, and is now seeking vengeance.
“It’s very weird. Even if (the Iraqis and Chinese) were going to do something why would they be blabbing to the yahoo smuggling them across the border? You have to wonder if they screwed him on a deal but you have to treat it seriously and the issue is how do you put it out to the public and not get everybody (in a panic)?”
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