Boy Speaks About Jihad-Training at New Mexico Compound
TAOS, NM — September 3, 2018
A 13-year-old boy who was part of a group taken into custody at a squalid New Mexico compound last month has told FBI agents his mother's boyfriend was training him to conduct "jihad" against non-believers, according to federal court documents.
The boy was among 11 children and five adults living at the compound in Taos County when it was raided on Aug. 3 by local sheriff's deputies who discovered a cache of firearms and the children living without food or clean water. The dead body of a three-year-old boy was found buried at the site later.
The group was arrested and three out of five were released. As for the children, the officials decided to keep the children under the supervision of the authorities for some time.
One of the children, a 13-year-old boy, said his parents wanted to "get an army together" and train them for jihad. He also noted that Siraj Ibn Wahhaj trained them in firearms and military techniques, including rapid reloads and hand-to-hand combat, and told them jihad meant killing non-believers on behalf of Allah, according to the affidavit filed in U.S. District Court in New Mexico.
In addition, the boy said the leader of the group performed supposed "exorcisms" on the children. A three-year-old boy, who experienced this by himself, died from a lack of oxygen during one of the sessions.
The children were ordered not to talk to any outsiders because they could 'all go to jail', his mother said when she allegedly received messages from God.
Defense lawyers have said that the five adults were exercising their constitutional rights to practice their religion and own firearms and that the group is being discriminated against because they are black and Muslim. The defense attorneys could not immediately be reached for comment on Saturday.
The five defendants came under FBI surveillance in May after Leveille wrote a letter to Ibn Wahhaj's brother asking him to join them and become a "martyr," state prosecutors have said.
Siraj Ibn Wahhaj and his partner, Jany Leveille will now remain in prison at least until next week's hearing.
The story begins in New Mexico where police found 11 exhausted children living in a "filthy" compound in rural New Mexico near the border with Colorado. Children between the ages of 1 and 15 were kept in disgusting conditions.
Prosecutors presented horrifying data that the group was organized precisely for the purpose of committing terrorist acts in the United States.