More information is coming out about the two men arrested last night on terrorism charges in New York City. Their names are Ahmed Ferhani and Mohamed Mamdouh, according to the New York Times. Mamdouh is reportedly from Morocco, and Ferhani from Algeria, but they both live in New York now. They were allegedly planning to attack a synagogue, but hadn't identified a specific target.
The Times talked to Ferhani's father, J. Ferhani with whom Ferhani lives in Whitestone, Queens. The elder Ferhani said his 26-year-old son was "a good kid" who "got involved with a bad kid." Ferhani fils had been working at Saks Fifth Avenue as a cosmetics salesman but recently quit to pursue a career as a model. J. Ferhani said his son was not an extremist--"He doesn't pray, he drinks," and he has friends of all faiths, including a Christian girlfriend.
There is still no explanation as to why the New York Police Department handled these arrests instead of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which usually takes the lead in terrorism cases. The department is due to have a news conference sometime today, so hopefully that will shed more light on the situation.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.