‘Fake’ US federal agent linked to Pakistani intelligence, prosecutors say | US News

A federal prosecutor has told a judge that one of the two American men arrested in Washington for posing as US federal security officials and gaining access to a secret service to protect Joe Biden has links with Pakistani intelligence.

Assistant Attorney Justice Joshua Rothstein asked the judge not to release Arian Taherzadeh, 40, and Haider Ali, 35, who were arrested Wednesday by the Department of Homeland Security as investigators.

The men are also accused of providing lucrative assistance to members of the Secret Service, including an agent, on the security details of First Lady Jill Biden.

Rothstein told the court that in 2019, just months before the two began raising security professionals in their Washington apartment building, Ali had traveled to Pakistan, Turkey, Iran and Qatar and traveled to Doha several times.

In addition, Rothstein said that Ali had “told witnesses that he had links with the ISI, a Pakistani intelligence agency.”

The Department of Justice (DoJ) views the case as a criminal matter rather than a national security issue. However, the Secret Service suspended four agents associated with the suspects.

“All staff involved in this matter are on administrative leave and are restricted from accessing the Secret Service facilities, equipment and systems,” the Secret Service said in a statement.

According to an affidavit filed in court, Taherzadeh and Ali both lived in an apartment building in Washington, D.C., where several federal security personnel live.

Some of those agents were persuaded to be special Homeland Security Investigators by displaying uniforms and documents in support of those claims.

U.S. Both were initially charged with misconduct against an officer, which carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison.

Rothstein, however, told the court that the charge could be expanded to a conspiracy that carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

The motives of the two men are unclear, but at one point they hired a third person to work for them, entrusting him with “research on someone who supported the Department of Defense and the intelligence community.”

According to the affidavit, Taherzadeh provided rent-free units to several Secret Service and Homeland Security employees at the same time at a cost of $ 4,000 per month.

According to the affidavit, he also gave them iPhones, surveillance systems, televisions and law enforcement equipment.

Taherzade provided a $ 2,000 assault rifle to a Secret Service agent who worked with Jill Biden’s team, and assisted the agent’s wife with her car loan.

The affidavit states that Taherzadeh and Ali appeared to control several units in the apartment complex and that Taherzadeh had access to the entire security system of the building.

Like many law enforcers, the two drove large black GMC-branded SUVs fitted with emergency lights.

Taherzade carried handguns used by the US Federal Law Enforcement and demonstrated to others that they had secure access to what appeared to be Homeland Security computer systems.

Leave a Comment