Ore. terrorism suspect portrayed as inexperienced

Ore. terrorism suspect portrayed as inexperienced

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — For the first time since he saw the person he believed was his bomb-building accomplice dragged away in handcuffs screaming “God is great,” an Oregon terrorism suspect came face to face Wednesday with the man he only knew as Hussein.

This time, suspect Mohamed Mohamud sat behind a defense table, and, in the witness box across a federal courtroom, “Hussein” testified that he witnessed Mohamud’s descent into radicalism.

“Hussein” was the invented cover name for an FBI agent who went from suburban beat cop to one of the lead players in an undercover sting operation against Mohamud, who’s now 21 years old. Other details of the agent’s life were kept out of testimony to protect his identity, and media and the general public were only permitted to listen to his testimony via closed-circuit television.

Mohamud is accused of attempting to detonate a bomb at a Portland Christmas tree-lighting ceremony in November 2010. The bomb was a fake supplied by “Hussein” who, while Mohamud was genuinely being detained, pretended to be arrested as the final act in a months-long acting job.

The testimony Wednesday included video and audio recordings of Mohamud discussing the slaughter of thousands of people in eerily mundane language, quoting Osama bin Laden and reveling in the 9/11 attacks.

“People jumping from the skyscrapers, I thought that was awesome,” Mohamud said in one of the recordings.

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