TRENTON, New Jersey — A New Jersey teen was arrested Thursday for transmitting an online threat that prompted last week’s FBI warning of a broad threat to the Jewish community in the state.
The threat, which the FBI later said had been “mitigated,” sent police scrambling to add extra patrols at synagogues and yeshivas.
Federal prosecutors charged Omar Alkattoul, 18, of Sayreville, with one count of transmitting a threat in interstate and foreign commerce.
“No one should be targeted for violence or with acts of hate because of how they worship,” U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger said. “According to the complaint, this defendant used social media to send a manifesto containing a threat to attack a synagogue based on his hatred of Jews.”
Alkattoul is scheduled to appear on Thursday before a federal magistrate.
According to the criminal complaint, Alkattoul posted on social media a link to a document he wrote entitled “When Swords Collide” about an attack on Jews.
In the document, Alkattoul allegedly wrote the following:
“I am the attacker and I would like to introduce myself. . . I am a Muslim with so many regrets but I can assure you this attack is not one of them and Insha’Allah many more attacks like these against the enemy of Allah and the pigs and monkeys will come.”
The document, as quoted in the complaint, said “Let’s be aware of the fact that the Jews promote the biggest hatred against Muslimeen even in the west. The Jews are in fact a very powerful group in the west which is why western countries today shill for them on top of the murtadeen in Saudi Arabia and every Arab country.”
“When we learn of credible threats to our community – whether based in hate toward religion, race, sexual orientation, or gender – we call on law enforcement and community partners to assist in identifying and mitigating that threat,” said James E. Dennehy of the FBI’s Newark field office. “Let it be known that when a threat of violence comes to our attention, the FBI and our partners will respond to keep the public safe.”
Alkattoul faces up to five years in prison if convicted.
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