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NEW YORK KNOWN WOLF: Halloween Truck Attacker Known to DHS Prior to ‘Act of Terror’

Shawn Helton
21st Century Wire

Years before allegedly carrying out a truck rampage on Halloween, the man named in New York’s most recent ‘act of terror’ was already well-known to the United States Department of Homeland Security.  This latest supposedly homegrown “ISIS-inspired” attack produces yet another ‘known wolf  with ties to suspected terrorists as well as authorities. 

According to officials, 29 year-old Sayfullo Saipov, the man charged in a deadly Manhattan vehicular assault on October 31st, was previously questioned over suspected ties to terrorism in 2015 by the US Department of Homeland Security. Saipov reportedly became a permanent legal resident upon arriving in the US on a diversity lottery visa in 2010. Since that time, the suspected terrorist moved from Ohio, Florida, and most recently to New Jersey, where he was interviewed by DHS in 2015.

As media attention on this case is focused on immigration laws, terror propaganda and security protocols – America’s latest terror tragedy reveals much more below the surface…


‘KNOWN WOLF’ – There’s a distinct pattern with acts of terror committed on Western soil. (Photo Illustration 21WIRE’s Shawn Helton)

Another American ‘Known Wolf’

Suspected terrorist Sayfullo (Habibullaevic) Saipov, who bounced across America, committed only minor traffic violations before his alleged involvement in the New York truck attack.

Over the past 24 hours, the suspected truck attacker Saipov, was said to have driven a Home Depot rental truck from New Jersey to the Manhattan area, where it is believed he deliberately targeted pedestrians and cyclists on a bike path alongside the Hudson River according to police reports. Shortly after the vehicular attack authorities state that Siapov brandished a pellet gun and paintball gun prior to being shot by NYPD and taken into custody. All told, at least eight people were said to have been killed, while nearly a dozen others were injured in the high-profile terror incident.

Reports state that Saipov became radicalized in America, allegedly taking ques from ISIS terror propaganda. However, Saipov, originally from Tashkent, the capital city of Uzbekistan, was supposedly from a modest and secular family that did not go to mosques, making this yet another suspicious terror-related case that paints a murky portrait on the way towards extremism.


‘SUSPECT’ – The alleged New York truck attacker was apparently a registered driver for popular car services Uber and Lyft. (Image Source: twitter)

Rather intriguingly, in a published report at ABC News we’re told Saipov, had been the subject of a deeper counter-terror investigation back in 2015:

“Sayfullo Saipov, who has been charged with killing eight people in a vehicle attack on the West Side of Manhattan on Tuesday, was interviewed in 2015 by federal agents about possible ties to suspected terrorists but a case was never opened against him, law enforcement officials tell ABC News.”

Continuing, the article outlined the following:

“Saipov was listed as a “point of contact” for two men who were listed in a Department of Homeland Security counterterrorism database and later overstayed their tourist visas, a federal official told ABC News. One was flagged after arriving from a so-called “threat country,” while the other vanished and was being actively sought by federal agents as a “suspected terrorist.”

Incredibly, in less than 24 hours after the deadly vehicular assault in New York, FBI authorities have located the suspected terrorist who supposedly vanished from the gaze of authorities said to be linked to Saipov.

Today FBI investigators released an alert regarding 32 year-old Mukhammadzoir Kadirov, a person of interest, who authorities also believe is linked to the recent attack.

CNN reported the following background information regarding Siapov:

“While in Ohio, Saipov registered two companies: Sayf Motors Inc. in 2011 and Bright Auto LLC in 2013. The latter was listed as a “motor carrier” in a Department of Transport database.
An acquaintance who lived in the same area of Ohio said he knew Saipov through the Uzbek community. Mirrakhmat Muminov said Saipov seemed like a “nervous person.” But he did not see any signs of radicalization in Saipov, Mirrakhmat said.”

In a recently published report from the NY Times, elements of a recent FBI probe into a suspected terror cell charged in Brooklyn over the past two years was revealed:

“Over the last two years, a terrorism investigation by the F.B.I., the Department of Homeland Security, the New York Police Department and federal prosecutors in Brooklyn resulted in charges against five men from Uzbekistan and one from Kazakhstan of providing material support to ISIS. Several of the men have pleaded guilty. It is unclear whether Mr. Saipov was connected with that investigation.”

QUESTION: Will the FBI eventually reveal that Saipov and Kadirov were on their radar prior to the New York truck attack? Only time will tell…

This latest act of terror in America may well prove to be similar in scope to many other ‘known wolf’ cases in recent history, as readers might recall the alleged New York bombing suspect 28 year-old Ahmad Khan Rahami, had been known to the FBI for years prior to supposedly carrying out plots in New York and New Jersey in the fall of 2016.

According to The Washington Post, the FBI had already known Rahami since 2014, which only added to the strongly suspicious event:

“The FBI’s probe into Ahmad Khan Rahami, the 28-year-old named as the only suspect in the bombings, was launched based on comments his father had made. An official said his father later recanted his comments. Agents conducted interviews, checked with other agencies and looked at internal databases, “none of which revealed ties to terrorism,” the bureau said in a statement.”


‘DARK DAYS’ –  The crime scene of the recent New York truck attack. (Image Source: twitter)

HAND IN HAND: Terror & Security 

QUESTION: Is it possible the FBI or any intelligence agency played some part in the latest New York City attack plot – whether inadvertently or otherwise?

In the search for answers regarding the investigative tactics of various intelligence agencies that have come into question, there’s none perhaps more dubious than the FBI’s Newburgh sting operation that resulted in the entrapment four men who participated in a fabricated event created by the bureau.

Here’s a 2011 passage from The Guardian describing how a FBI informant named Shahed Hussain coerced four others into a fake terror plot:

“The “Newburgh Four” now languish in jail. Hussain does not. For Hussain was a fake. In fact, Hussain worked for the FBI as an informant trawling mosques in hope of picking up radicals.

Yet far from being active militants, the four men he attracted were impoverished individuals struggling with Newburgh’s grim epidemic of crack, drug crime and poverty. One had mental issues so severe his apartment contained bottles of his own urine. He also believed Florida was a foreign country.

Hussain offered the men huge financial inducements to carry out the plot – including $250,000 to one man – and free holidays and expensive cars.

As defence lawyers poured through the evidence, the Newburgh Four came to represent the most extreme form of a controversial FBI policy to use invented terrorist plots to lure targets. “There has been no case as egregious as this. It is unique in the incentive the government provided. A quarter million dollars?” said Professor Karen Greenberg, a terrorism expert at Fordham University.”

The reputation of the FBI has suffered greatly in the recent past as well as over the past couple of decades. Following the 1993 WTC bombing, the FBI was revealed to have been ‘handling’ Emad A. Salem, a former Egyptian army officer who was a prized undercover operative thrust into confidential informant status and person who played a key role in the bomb plot.

QUESTION: Will authorities reveal that Siapov may have also had ties to informants or other known wolves?

Here at 21WIRE, we’ve kept a running report on ‘known wolf’ actors involved in many attacks on Western soil. Take a look below at an updated version that includes other suspicious intelligence informant and terror cases that have held that distinction over the years:

Tamerlan Tsarnaev (see his story here)
Buford Rogers
 (see his story here)
Jerad Miller (see his story here)
Naji Mansour (see his story here)
Quazi Mohammad Nafis (see his story here)
Mohamed Osman Mohamud (see his story here)
Timothy McVeigh (see his story here)
Salim Benghalem (see his story here)
Michael Adebolajo (see his story here)
Daba Deng (see his story here)
Elton Simpson (see his story here)
Man Haron Monis (see his story here)
Abu Hamza (see his story here)
Haroon Rashid Aswat (see his story here)
Mark Vicars (see his story here)
Glen Rodgers (see his story here)
Omar Mateen (see his story here)
Tashfeen Malik (see her story here)
Djamel Beghal  (see his story here)
Anjem Choudary (see his story here)
Cherif Kouachi (see his story here)
Said Kouachi (see his story here)
Amedy Coulibaly (see his story here)
Hayat Boumeddiene (see her story here)
Salah Abdeslam (see his story here)
Michael Zehaf-Bibeau (see his story here)
Nidal Malik Hassan (see his story here)
Abdelhakim Dekhar  (see his story here)
Abdelhamid Abaaoud (see his story here)
Samy Amimour (see his story here)
Ismaël Omar Mostefaï (see his story here)
Mohamed Lahouij Bouhlel (see his story here)
Anis Amri (see his story here)
Esteban Santiago-Ruiz (see his story here)
Abdulkadir Masharipov (see his story here)
Khalid Masood (see his story here)
Khuram Butt (see his story here)
Youssef Zaghba (see his story here)

Since 9/11, the city of New York has dedicated a massive amount of resources to anti-terror training, with a police department larger than the standing armies of 84 countries. It is a city that has done more than any other American city as far as terror readiness yet, it continues to be plagued by a series of plots and attacks over the last 16 years.

Following America’s previous most deadly mass shooting in Orlando were reports revealing that the FBI had a close relationship with the suspected attacker through the use of a well-known confidential informant. Similarly, recent reports state that “FBI, court filings have revealed how the agency allowed an alleged ‘home grown’ ISIS attack to take place in Garland, Texas.” 21WIRE previously uncovered suspicious elements regarding the cartoon event in Garland when the attack occurred.

QUESTION: How is it that federal agencies continue to let known wolves slip through the cracks?

As we’ve stated before, mass media injects their own formula for laying out a familiar series of polarizing political points in the aftermath of any ‘tragic’ event. Appearing to purposefully redirect the public to look at a ready-made laundry list of hateful rhetoric, social media declarations and random writings as an ironclad motive for a crime. The aftermath in the recent terror case of New York is no different, as it has already rapidly descended into a barrage of politically motivated theorizing.

The story of a Uzbekistan truck attacker also recalls the the suspicious terror case involving the Turkish nightclub shooting at the start of the year on New Year’s Eve.

To unravel future cases, it’s important to keep a watchful eye on any links to past plots…

21WIRE associate editor Shawn Helton is a researcher and writer, specializing in forensic analysis of high-profile crime scene and counter terrorism investigations, and the deconstruction and analysis of the mass-media coverage surrounding those cases. He has compiled an extensive body of work covering a number of high-profile events since 2012.

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