Former Mayo researcher in US on H-1B visa pleads guilty to terrorism charge

Masood expressed a desire to conduct "lone wolf" terrorist attacks in the United States.

Muhammad Masood/Sherburne County Jail

A Pakistani doctor formerly employed by the Mayo Clinic in Rochester as a research coordinator has pleaded guilty to attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization, namely ISIS.

Muhammad Masood, 30, a licensed medical doctor in Pakistan, was formerly employed at the clinic in Rochester, Minn., under an H-1B Visa.

Charges say between January 2020 and March 2020, Masood made several statements to others pledging his allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (“ISIS”) and its leader, and expressing his desire to travel to Syria to fight for ISIS.

Masood also expressed his desire to conduct “lone wolf” terrorist attacks in the United States.

On Feb. 21, 2020, Masood purchased a plane ticket from Chicago, Ill., to Amman, Jordan, and from there planned to travel to Syria. On March 16, 2020, Masood’s travel plans changed because Jordan closed its borders to incoming travel due to the coronavirus pandemic. Masood then planned to fly from Minneapolis to Los Angeles to meet up with an individual who he believed would assist him with travel via a cargo ship to deliver him to ISIS territory.

On March 19, 2020, Masood traveled from Rochester to Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) to board a flight bound for Los Angeles, Calif. Upon arrival at MSP, Masood checked in for his flight and was subsequently arrested by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force.

Masood remains incarcerated in federal custody to await sentencing at a later date.

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Minnesota Crime Watch & Information publishes news, info and commentary about crime, public safety and livability issues in Minneapolis, the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota.

 

Crime Watch MN

Minnesota Crime Watch & Information publishes news, info and commentary about crime, public safety and livability issues in Minneapolis, the Twin Cities and Greater Minnesota.