First lady Jill Biden speaks at Bergen Community College in Paramus, N.J, last month.
- Arian Taherzadeh, 40, and Haider Ali, 35, are charged with impersonating federal law enforcement.
- They obtained firearms for their disguise, and bribed Secret Service targets with gifts, the feds allege.
- One of the alleged bribe targets was assigned to the First Lady’s security detail.
The FBI has arrested two men in an alarming alleged plot to ingratiate themselves with federal law enforcement officials — including a Secret Service agent assigned to First Lady Jill Biden’s detail.
Four members of the Secret Service have been placed on leave as a result of the investigation, officials said, without releasing their names.
One Secret Service agent in the First Lady’s detail was offered a $2,000 assault rifle by one of the men arrested, officials said. It’s not clear if that agent is among those on leave.
According to an FBI affidavit filed Wednesday night in US District Court in DC, Arian Taherzadeh, 40, and Haider Ali, 35, began the plot by posing as Department of Homeland Security employees.
The two allegedly obtained handguns, rifles and tactical gear, and drove around in a black GMC SUV — equipped with emergency lights — as part of their disguise.
Over the past two years, they allegedly cozied up to unnamed members of federal law enforcement and the defense community, including a Secret Service agent assigned to protect the First Lady, the affidavit alleges.
Taherzadeh treated members of the Secret Service and an actual employee of the DHS to a grab bag of valuable gifts, including free apartments and electronics and access to government vehicles, the feds charge.
According to the affidavit, the gifts included “rent-free apartments (with a total yearly rent of over $40,000 per apartment), iPhones, surveillance systems, a drone, a flat screen television, a case for storing an assault rifle, a generator, and law enforcement paraphernalia.”
Taherzadeh allegedly offered to buy a $2,000 assault rifle for the Secret Service agent in Biden’s detail.
The two men gained access to many of the Secret Service agents by moving into a DC apartment building where “several” agents lived, and then offering free apartments and other gifts to the agents and their family members, the affadavit alleges.
One of many bizarre details from the affadavit describes a bogus, DHS “task force” the two men claimed be part of.
The “task force” was looking for new members, Taherzadeh and Ali allegedly claimed.
They invited an unnamed “individual” to apply for a position, and as part of the application process, the would-be recruit agreed to be “shot with an Airsoft rifle to evaluate their pain tolerance and reaction,” the affadavit alleges.
The recruit was also “assigned to conduct research on an individual that provided support to the Department of Defense and intelligence community,” the affadavit alleges.
Despite all of the apparant effort, the unnamed recruit was only told “that the hiring was in process,” the feds allege.
Taherzadeh and Ali came under suspicion a week ago, on March 14, after a US Postal Inspector went to their DC apartment to investigate an assault on a letter carrier they were believed to have witnessed.
The two men allegedly told the postal inspector that they themselves were also investigators. They said that they worked for Homeland Security’s Special Police Investigation Unit and had also been deputized by the DC city government as “special police,” the affadavit alleges.
“Taherzadeh and Ali claimed to be involved in undercover gang-related investigations as well as conducting investigations related to the violence at the United States Capitol on January 6, 2021,” the affadavit alleges.
Both men are in custody and due to appear in court on Thursday afternoon.
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