View Full Version : The puzzle that is Minh Quang Pham

07-03-2012, 01:39 PM
A strange story IMHO being a Vietnamese immigrant and so far nearly all the information I have found is based on an official DoJ / FBI / NYPD news release:http://www.justice.gov/usao/nys/pressreleases/june12/phamminhquangarrest.html

..has been indicted on charges of providing material support to, and receiving military training from, al Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (“AQAP”), a designated foreign terrorist organization, as well as possessing and using firearms in furtherance of crimes of violence, and other violations....He also helped design and disseminate its propaganda....In December 2010, Pham traveled from the UK to Yemen...(he) returned to the UK from Yemen in (July) 2011. He was arrested today based on the Indictment described above. Prior to his arrest, Pham was held by British authorities in immigration custody.

WSJ adds:
Prosecutors said he had worked alongside two U.S. citizens as he helped al-Qaida design and distribute propaganda


The Yemen connection:
Sources familiar with the case said he met with numerous leaders of AQAP in Yemen, including the terror group's then leader, Anwar al-Awlaki, and Samir Khan, editor of its English-language magazine "Inspire," and took a loyalty oath. Both Americans-turned-terror leaders were killed in a drone strike last September.


All quite strange. I don't dismiss a Vietnames origin male joining the Jihad. If he was an IT geek, spoke English, was a "clean skin" and able to travel freely he would have be quite a gain for his alleged hosts. So why did he travel to Yemen, one of those places that sets off alarm bells?

07-05-2012, 09:13 PM
A little more, this time from the UK end:http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/crime/alqaida-online-propaganda-expert-arrested-in-britain-7917278.html

07-06-2012, 02:41 AM
from David:
So why did he travel to Yemen, one of those places that sets off alarm bells?

that is, personal interviews by folks who can't travel easily from Yemen - and are not that safe there.



01-09-2016, 07:05 AM
This case remains a puzzle, but maybe coming to an end:
A Vietnamese man pleaded guilty Friday in New York to supporting Al-Qaeda in Yemen, where he learned to build a bomb earmarked to blow up London's Heathrow airport.

It appears that Pham was extradited to the USA in March 2015, after a protracted legal case over his UK citizenship being revoked by the Home Secretary
...after being charged with travelling to Yemen to receive training at an Al-Qaeda camp.

Why he was not charged here eludes me as evidence was found upon his arrival @ London Heathrow in July 2011:
A search of his belongings discovered electronic files setting out his links to AQAP as well as a live round of armor-piercing ammunition capable of being used in a Kalashnikov assault rifle.

05-11-2016, 09:45 PM
Via a reporter in Jerusalem a report on Pham's pre-sentencing statement in court @ New York; which starts with:
A British member of al-Qaeda has claimed he only agreed to carry out a suicide bombing at Heathrow as a way of escaping from a terror training camp in Yemen where he was suffering from scabies. Minh Quang Pham, a British citizen born in Vietnam, spent six months in Yemen in 2011 training with al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), one of the deadliest branches of the terror network.....Ahead of his sentencing Pham wrote his US judge a 13-page handwritten letter in which he said he was "very naive" when he joined the terror group and insisted he had no intention of actually carrying out the Heathrow attack.Link:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/05/11/british-al-qaeda-member-agreed-to-bomb-heathrow-so-he-could-esca/