LOS ANGELES – Three Saudi nationals have been charged in two separate indictments for allegedly violating federal export legal guidelines by buying greater than $100,000 in weapons elements in america whereas on pupil visas after which smuggling the elements to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
A five-count indictment returned Wednesday by a federal grand jury in Riverside expenses Hatim Humeed Alsufyani, 36, and Mosab Alzahrani, 27, each previously of San Bernardino, with one depend of conspiracy to smuggle items out of america with out acquiring export licenses. Alsufyani additionally was charged with three counts of knowingly exporting weapons elements with out a license, whereas Alzahrani additionally was charged with one depend of knowingly exporting weapons elements with out a license.
Each instances had been investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Safety Investigations (HSI) and the FBI, underneath the auspices of the Joint Terrorism Process Pressure. Assist was supplied by U.S. Customs and Border Safety.
Between Could 2014 and July 2018, Alsufyani and Alzahrani allegedly conspired to smuggle firearms elements from the U.S. to Saudi Arabia by concealing rifle barrels, rifle triggers, and different gadgets associated to firearms of their checked baggage on flights from Los Angeles to Saudi Arabia. They allegedly additionally would falsely establish rifle barrels, rifle triggers, and different gadgets associated to firearms as “bathe curtain rods” or “automobile elements,” or different false names earlier than exporting the gadgets to Saudi Arabia.
For instance, on December 10, 2016, Alzahrani tried to board a flight from Los Angeles to Riyadh with 30 firearms elements hid in his checked baggage, together with 12 rear sight leaf assemblies and 6 New England Customized Gun single set rifle triggers, the indictment alleges. Alzahrani additionally lied to U.S. customs officers about possessing rifle barrels in america that had been meant to be exported to Saudi Arabia, in accordance with the indictment.
If convicted of all expenses, Alsufyani would face a statutory most sentence of 65 years in federal jail, and Alzahrani would face 25 years in federal jail.
In a separate indictment returned on November 1 and unsealed at the moment, Abdulwahab Mohammed A. Alabdulwahab, 30, previously of Los Angeles, was charged with 15 counts of smuggling and 15 counts of knowingly exporting firearms elements from america with out first having obtained an export license from the State Division.
Between December 2015 and January 2018, Alabdulwahab contacted U.S.-based firearms elements retailers to buy firearms elements for the aim of illegally exporting these parts to Saudi Arabia, the indictment alleges. Particularly, Alabdulwahab bought .223-caliber and .308-caliber rifle barrels, which by federal legislation require a license to be exported from america to some other nation, in accordance with the indictment. At no time did Alabdulwahab apply for, obtain, or possess such a license, the indictment alleges.
If convicted of all expenses, Alabdulwahab would face a statutory most sentence of 10 years in federal jail for every smuggling depend, and 20 years’ imprisonment for every violation of the Arms Export Management Act.
All three defendants are believed to be in Saudi Arabia.
Each instances are being prosecuted by the U.S. Lawyer for the Central District of California.