Khaled Hussein Ali

Khaled Hussein Ali is the alleged leader of al-Qaeda’s online propaganda arm in Brazil, the Jihad Media Battalion (JMB). JMB publicized al-Qaeda’s attacks and distributed communications from its leaders in 17 countries. According to the Brazilian weekly Veja, Ali also provided logistical support for al-Qaeda operations. As of 2011, Ali lived in São Paulo, from where he reportedly ran the JMB.Da Redação, “Exclusivo: documentos da CIA, FBI e PF mostram como age a rede do terror islâmico no Brasil,” Veja (São Paulo), April 2, 2011, https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/exclusivo-documentos-da-cia-fbi-e-pf-mostram-como-age-a-rede-do-terror-islamico-no-brasil/; Robin Yapp, “Brazil latest base for Islamic extremists,” Telegraph (London), April 3, 2011, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/southamerica/brazil/8424929/Brazil-latest-base-for-Islamic-extremists.html.

Ali was reportedly born in Lebanon and served in the Lebanese military. In the early 1990s, he moved to São Paulo, where he married and ultimately obtained Brazilian legal residency status in 1998. In addition to his work for al-Qaeda, Ali also reportedly operated an Internet café.Da Redação, “Exclusivo: documentos da CIA, FBI e PF mostram como age a rede do terror islâmico no Brasil,” Veja (São Paulo), April 2, 2011, https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/exclusivo-documentos-da-cia-fbi-e-pf-mostram-como-age-a-rede-do-terror-islamico-no-brasil/.

The Federal Police of Brazil arrested Ali in March 2009 after a four-month-long investigation of his activities in which Brazilian authorities collaborated with the FBI.Da Redação, “Exclusivo: documentos da CIA, FBI e PF mostram como age a rede do terror islâmico no Brasil,” Veja (São Paulo), April 2, 2011, https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/exclusivo-documentos-da-cia-fbi-e-pf-mostram-como-age-a-rede-do-terror-islamico-no-brasil/; “PF manteve preso libanês que divulgava textos da al-Qaeda,” O Globo (Rio de Janiero), May 26, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/pf-manteve-preso-libanes-que-divulgava-textos-da-al-qaeda-3130641. The investigation was based on allegations that Ali led the JMB and distributed tasks to its members, such as translating videos featuring Osama bin Laden.Tatiana Farah, “Libanês acusado de ligação com al-Qaeda não pode deixar o Brasil; investigação é encerrada,” O Globo (Rio de Janeiro), May 28, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/libanes-acusado-de-ligacao-com-al-qaeda-nao-pode-deixar-brasil-investigacao-encerrada-3123005. In the investigation, authorities found that Ali had disseminated anti-Western, anti-Semitic, and other racial propaganda online on behalf of the JMB.Da Redação, “Exclusivo: documentos da CIA, FBI e PF mostram como age a rede do terror islâmico no Brasil,” Veja (São Paulo), April 2, 2011, https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/exclusivo-documentos-da-cia-fbi-e-pf-mostram-como-age-a-rede-do-terror-islamico-no-brasil/; “PF manteve preso libanês que divulgava textos da al-Qaeda,” O Globo (Rio de Janiero), May 26, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/pf-manteve-preso-libanes-que-divulgava-textos-da-al-qaeda-3130641. Ali was indicted on charges of racism, incitement to crime, and gang formation.Da Redação, “Exclusivo: documentos da CIA, FBI e PF mostram como age a rede do terror islâmico no Brasil,” Veja (São Paulo), April 2, 2011, https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/exclusivo-documentos-da-cia-fbi-e-pf-mostram-como-age-a-rede-do-terror-islamico-no-brasil/. Ali denied his involvement with the JMB. He was imprisoned for 21 days between April and May 2009,Tatiana Farah, “Libanês acusado de ligação com al-Qaeda não pode deixar o Brasil; investigação é encerrada,” O Globo (Rio de Janeiro), May 28, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/libanes-acusado-de-ligacao-com-al-qaeda-nao-pode-deixar-brasil-investigacao-encerrada-3123005. but authorities were unable to charge Ali with any offenses relating to terrorism, as Brazil’s penal code included no anti-terrorism laws until 2016.Da Redação, “Exclusivo: documentos da CIA, FBI e PF mostram como age a rede do terror islâmico no Brasil,” Veja (São Paulo), April 2, 2011, https://veja.abril.com.br/mundo/exclusivo-documentos-da-cia-fbi-e-pf-mostram-como-age-a-rede-do-terror-islamico-no-brasil/; “PF manteve preso libanês que divulgava textos da al-Qaeda,” O Globo (Rio de Janiero), May 26, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/pf-manteve-preso-libanes-que-divulgava-textos-da-al-qaeda-3130641; “Brazil: New Anti-Terrorism Law Enacted,” Library of Congress, April 15, 2016, http://www.loc.gov/law/foreign-news/article/brazil-new-anti-terrorism-law-enacted/. Ali was released on May 16, 2009, but was required to turn over his Lebanese passport to federal authorities so that he would not be able to leave Brazil in the future.“PF manteve preso libanês que divulgava textos da al-Qaeda,” O Globo (Rio de Janiero), May 26, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/pf-manteve-preso-libanes-que-divulgava-textos-da-al-qaeda-3130641; Tatiana Farah, “Libanês acusado de ligação com al-Qaeda não pode deixar o Brasil; investigação é encerrada,” O Globo (Rio de Janeiro), May 28, 2009, https://oglobo.globo.com/mundo/libanes-acusado-de-ligacao-com-al-qaeda-nao-pode-deixar-brasil-investigacao-encerrada-3123005.

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