Using a case study of the investigation and prosecution of members of a terrorist group (Jamaat Ul Fuqra) in Colorado, this research report identifies the types of white-collar crimes used by the group for funding mechanisms and identity deception and suggests how lessons learned from white-collar crime investigations can provide guidance for State and local police and prosecutors who may investigate terrorist groups.
The Fuqra group was first organized in Pakistan by Sheikh Mubarik Al Jilani Hasmi, who also established a United States Fuqra organization in 1980. Most members of the U.S. Fuqra are African-Americans who have adopted extremist beliefs and live in communal environments or "Jamaats." In August 1989, the discovery of a storage locker by the Colorado Springs police marked the beginning of an investigation that focused on fraudulent claims for worker's compensation, a white-collar crime that is the focus of this report. Linked to the fraudulent worker's compensation claims were other white-collar crimes, notably identification fraud, money laundering, and tax evasion. Proceeds from these crimes were used to plan violent terrorist acts. This research obtained information on these cases through interviews and document analysis. This report describes the Colorado investigation in a module format. The first module describes the organization and activity of Fuqra, followed by a module on the investigation of properties that included a vehicle search, a storage locker search, and the search of a Fuqra compound. The third module details investigations of four fraudulent worker's compensation claims, and the fourth module addresses the group's cash flow from fraud to the purchase of property. Legal strategies are profiled in a fifth module, and the sixth module discusses lessons learned and best practices. 13 tables, 4 charts, and 3 supplementary appendixes
Date Published: September 1, 2004