Correction! I am so sorry to have misread this story earlier, it is not the Somali charged in this government case who slipped out of the US, it’s the imam hired by Hassan (the Somali) who skipped town when the heat was turned up.
This is a story that has everything from taxpayer rip-offs to terrorism. Emporians especially take note! Although this was reported way back in April by Channel 4 News in Nashville, TN, we are just seeing it now (news still does travel slowly). Somali refugee gets federal grants, has legal problems and an imam connected with the case skips out of the country. Here is a part of the account, but every bit of it is interesting, so read the whole thing here.
According to annual reports, the Somali Center in south Nashville receives $400,000 per year in taxpayer dollars from federal, state and local governments.
But what has some asking questions is how the center’s executive director, Abdizirik Hassan, is still getting grants after pleading guilty to making false statements during a government investigation.
In 2001, Hassan’s Nashville bank was shut down by counter-terrorism investigators because they said the bank was linked to Al-Barakat. Al-Barakat is a bank and wiring transfer service that is linked to al-Qaida, according to investigators.
Hassan was arrested and charged with felony illegal banking.
While out on bond, Hassan and the Somali Center were awarded a grant in the amount of nearly $500,000 by the same federal government that indicted him.
The grant came from the U.S. Office of Minority Health.
The grant was intended to help African refugees with mental health, to help stop domestic violence and to stop the practice of female genital mutilation, which health officials said is still happening in the U.S.
What does Imam Ibrahim have to say about all this? As of this report in April no one could ask him.
Second-hand sources said that Ibrahim now lives in Kenya and there are no answers for his sudden departure from Nashville.
Additional thoughts on Nov. 25th: A few days ago we had a guest post suggesting that Muslim refugees were coming to certain cities drawn by imams who practice the salafist form of Islam, that is the Sharia law-loving form. Refugees are free to move from their original resettlement cities within a few months of arrival in the US and the assumption has been that they move for jobs or to be with more of their countrymen, maybe there is more to it. This Nashville imam (above) sounds like he might have had something to hide.
Remember Imam Hendi: 30 Muslim mayors by 2015!
For another scam involving a volag (non-profit group) and federal money, see our coverage of Nikki Tesfai in California.