FBI Director Wray pressed on 8 ISIS-linked border crossers released into US

Republican Sen. Jerry Moran warned that terrorists 'will inevitably exploit' Biden administration parole policies for illegal border crossers

 Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., penned a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray on Thursday, demanding answers on how eight Tajikistan nationals – who crossed the border illegally and were later arrested in three major American cities over the past several days amid suspicion they have ties to the terror group ISIS – had been released into the U.S. interior in the first place. 

Moran called on Wray to elaborate on testimony he gave last week before the Senate Appropriations' Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies, which has oversight of the FBI. 

"Last week, during the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (FBI) budget hearing before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies, we discussed the concerning trend that more known or suspected terrorists are exploiting our southern border to gain access to the United States. Today, we have learned that eight ISIS suspects, nationals of Tajikistan, were finally arrested after crossing the southern border last year, despite being vetted during their initial processing," Moran wrote in the letter, exclusively obtained by Fox News Digital. "The Biden administration’s policies allow those entering our country illegally to move freely about the United States. The FBI, along with its intelligence and law enforcement partners, must act decisively to stop the terrorists who will inevitably exploit this vulnerability." 

The senator wrote that he and Wray shared "the same concern about suspected terrorists and watch-list subjects crossing the border." 


Wray sits to testify before the Senate

FBI Director Christopher Wray arrives to testify during a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on June 4, 2024, in Washington, D.C. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

Wray testified last week, "The bigger problem, in my view, is twofold. One, individuals who, when they come in, are either armed with fake documents or snuck in some way or – or, and this is very important, individuals for whom there's not enough derogatory information in the intelligence community to watch list them yet." 

Given the eight Tajikistan nationals with ties to ISIS "were allowed to enter the US and later arrested in New York, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia by Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE] in conjunction with the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force," Moran pressed Wray to answer "based on your understanding of this case and our discussion last week, how were these individuals allowed to enter the United States?" 

Moran grills Wray before Senate subcommittee

Sen. Jerry Moran questions FBI Director Christopher Wray during a Senate hearing on June 4, 2024, in Washington, D.C. (Celal Gunes/Anadolu via Getty Images)

"Do either of the two categories of issues you outlined for me apply in this case?" Moran, who serves as vice chair of the subcommittee, asked Wray. "Most importantly, what can the FBI do to ensure that suspected terrorists and watch-list subjects do not make it to our major cities or anywhere else inside the United States?" 


"I stand ready to work with you to solve this critical issue facing our country," Moran wrote. "Because of this administration’s immigration and parole polices, the burden will remain on our intelligence and law enforcement communities to address this threat on US soil. We must do everything in our power to ensure the safety of the American people." 

Wray speaks to Senate subcommittee

Director Christopher Wray testifies on the FBI's proposed budget for the 2025 fiscal year on June 4, 2024, in Washington, D.C. (Samuel Corum/Getty Images)

The eight Tajikistan nationals crossed the southern border illegally and initially had no derogatory information that was flagged to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) initially during processing, a federal source told Fox News on Tuesday. They received "full vetting" before they were released into the U.S., the source added. 

It was afterward that new derogatory information flagged national security concerns – and ISIS ties.


"Our adversaries know the our southern border is wide open, putting American lives at risk," Moran said in a statement to Fox News Digital. "Last week, I questioned FBI Director Wray regarding steps the FBI is taking to protect Americans from terrorists illegally crossing the southern border. I appreciate the FBI’s work to track down these eight potential terrorists, but the fact of the matter is, the Biden administration should never have allowed these suspected terrorists onto U.S. soil in the first place. The disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan and a defenseless border has left our country vulnerable to attack."

The FBI and DHS confirmed the eight Tajikistan nationals are detained in ICE custody pending removal proceedings. However, it is unclear if the arrests will result in any terror-related charges.

Last week, Wray warned the subcommittee that since Hamas' Oct. 7 attack in southern Israel, a "rogue gallery of foreign terrorist organizations" have been calling for attacks on Americans, the U.S. and U.S. allies. 

"And given those calls for action, our most immediate concern has been that individuals or small groups will draw a twisted inspiration from the events in the Middle East to carry out attacks here at home," Wray said. "But now, on top of that, increasingly concerning is the potential for a coordinated attack here in the homeland, not unlike the ISIS K attack we saw at the Russian concert hall back in March." 

1 comment:

  1. The entire Biden administration should be tried for treason.


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