By CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid
October 28, 2017 marks eight years since the tragic homicide of Detroit Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah who was fatally shot 20 times by FBI agents in Dearborn, Michigan. The homicide of Abdullah was the culmination of several years of the FBI spending millions of dollars including renting a commercial warehouse and freight trucks, purchasing expensive electronic items and paying confidential informants in a so-called counterterrorism investigating at the community he led, Masjid Al-Haqq in Detroit. The raid which ensued that ended in the killing of Abdullah, of course, was not related to any terrorism-related charges, yet the community was smeared in the process.
The FBI, which we believe falsely claimed that Abdullah drew a weapon shooting a law enforcement canine that gave them cover to open fire on him, was sued by CAIR-MI on behalf of the Abdullah family for his wrongful death. The lawsuit, which also alleged that FBI agents committed fraud in a coverup of Abdullah’s homicide, was dismissed on a legal technicality, not on the merits of the claims, and the U.S. Supreme Court last year refused to hear the appeal of the case. Thus, all legal measures of seeking worldly justice for the Abdullah family have been exhausted in America’s judicial system.
Despite Abdullah being deceased now for eight years, the FBI recently approached a Michigan imam inquiring into how he felt about Abdullah and asking him if the community was still suspicious of the FBI due to homicide. Such prodding may be a result of the FBI having a more difficult time recruiting as many informants to infiltrate the Detroit Muslim community. Nonetheless, CAIR-MI’s office gets calls every week of the FBI visiting Muslims at their homes seek their “cooperation.”
As the founder of the Detroit Coalition Against Police Brutality used to frequently say before his passing, “We are not anti-police; we are anti-law enforcement misconduct.” CAIR-MI thus is not anti-FBI but finds their tactics for recruiting confidential informants, some who act as agent provocateurs, to be completely unethical. Though all citizens and residents of America should report criminal activity which they see or have knowledge of to the proper law enforcement authorities, it is not our position that community members should feel obliged to invite the FBI into their homes to give information about persons or spy on their own houses of worship in the name of “cooperation.” There is no moral or legal obligation to do so. Moreover, cooperation which leads to potential entrapment of people has not only caused legal hardships for Muslims around the country including in Michigan but had fatal consequences in the case of Abdullah.
If you or anyone you know gets approached by the FBI for questioning or asked to cooperate, contact CAIR-MI immediately at 248-559-2247, so you can receive proper legal guidance based upon our years of experience in dealing with such matters. Exercising your rights is very American not voluntarily relinquishing them in the name of preserving our nation.