Saudi terrorism suspect bought car in Oklahoma City

A Saudi terrorism suspect accused of buying chemicals to build a bomb in Texas had at least one tie to Oklahoma City: He bought a car here.
BY RANDY ELLIS rellis@opubco.com Published: February 26, 2011
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A Saudi terrorism suspect accused of buying chemicals to build a bomb in Texas had at least one tie to Oklahoma City: He bought a car here.

Khalid Ali-m Aldawsari, a 20-year-old former Texas Tech chemical engineering student living in Lubbock, Texas, was charged Wednesday with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction.

Aldawsari purchased chemicals and other materials capable of producing a powerful bomb and wrote memos and sent e-mails to himself that suggested a number of possible targets, according to an affidavit filed by an FBI agent.

Possible targets included the Dallas home of former President George W. Bush, 12 U.S. dams, nuclear power plants, a Dallas nightclub, streets in New York City and three U.S. citizens who had previously served in the military at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.

Aldawsari bought a 2006 Hyundai Sonata in Oklahoma City and registered it on Oct. 5, 2009, the affidavit said. It referenced a blog entry in which Aldawsari described the hassles he experienced in making the purchase.

The Amarillo Globe-News was able to find a Sept. 20, 2009, blog entry that appears to be Aldawsari's description of his car purchase the day before.

The blog entry indicates Aldawsari ran into difficulties because he didn't arrive in Oklahoma City until Saturday afternoon and the branches of his bank were closed.

�I went to ATM and I got the maximum withdraw for one day $1,500,� the blog states.

It goes on to indicate he paid the unidentified car dealer the $1,500, promised to pay the remaining $5,500 when he got back to Lubbock, and gave the dealer his passport to guarantee the deal.

It was unclear from the affidavit whether the vehicle was to be used as a car bomb. FBI agents reported finding a Jan. 12 e-mail containing �a simplified lesson on how to booby-trap a vehicle.� However, they also reported Aldawsari conducted Internet research on Feb. 19 concerning whether a person could take a backpack into a nightclub,� and had researched the possibility of concealing explosives inside a realistic-looking doll.

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