Accused terror conspirator lived in quiet Willow Spring neighborhood
Posted July 27, 2009 10:18 p.m. EDT
Updated July 28, 2009 5:57 p.m. EDT
Willow Springs, N.C. — A father and his two sons are among seven people accused of supporting terrorism by training and traveling overseas, federal authorities said Monday.
According to the indictment, Daniel Patrick Boyd, also known as "Saifullah," and the other defendants conspired to provide resources to terrorists over the last three years.
Boyd, who authorities said led the men, lived at 134 Lakeside Circle in Willow Spring. The 39-year-old was married and operated a drywall business.
During July 2007, Daniel Boyd traveled to Israel with several of the other defendants, hoping to engage in "violent jihad" that included “supporting and participating in terrorist activities abroad and committing acts of murder, kidnapping or maiming persons,” according to the indictment. They failed in their efforts, and the men returned home, the indictment stated.
Jeremy Johnson, Boyd’s neighbor in Willow Spring, said the indictment, unsealed Monday, shocked the residents of the rural Johnston County community.
"You just don't know, this day and age, you just don't know who your neighbors are,” Johnson said.
The Boyds held regular prayer services and played Islamic-sounding music, neighbors said.
"They were great neighbors. We never had any trouble with them. Their kids played with our kids,” neighbor Heather Roegner said. "It is crazy. I don't know what to think."
Authorities searched Boyd’s Willow Spring home Monday afternoon.
"They are going through the house and bringing things out,” neighbor Ann Stephenson said.
A list of items seized from the home was not available Monday night. The indictment alleges Boyd obtained a variety of weapons to support his efforts including: a Bushmaster M4A3 rifle, an ETA M16 V System C-MAG and a Ruger mini 14 long gun.
Boyd, who trained in terrorist camps in Afghanistan and Pakistan, fought in Afghanistan from 1989 and 1992, according to indictment.
His two sons: Dylan Boyd, 22, and Zakariya Boyd, 20, are also suspects. The three men, along with Hysen Sherifi, 24, Anes Subasic, 33, Mohammad Omar Aly Hassan, 22, and Ziyad Yaghi, 21, have been charged with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists and conspiring to murder, kidnap and injure persons abroad.
Yaghi was also on probation, according to court records. He was found guilty of felonious restraint.
From June 10 to July 7, the suspects spent time training for holy war on private property in Caswell County, the indictment stated.
"We were aware of the ongoing investigation, and our office did provide assistance in the investigation as requested by the FBI Counter Terrorism Task Force," Sheriff Michael Welch said.
It was not disclosed Monday how authorities learned of the terror conspiracy. A federal grand jury returned a sealed seven-count indictment against the defendants Wednesday.
The defendants were arrested at various locations and made their first court appearances Monday. If convicted, they could face life in prison.