Judge Orders Release of ‘Newburgh Four’ After Evidence FBI ‘Manufactured’ Terror Plot

Judge Orders Release of ‘Newburgh Four’ After Evidence FBI ‘Manufactured’ Terror Plot  cromitie

A judge granted the release of a man convicted in a post-9/11 terrorist sting after criticizing the FBI for using a “unsavory” confidential informant to fabricate a plot to bomb New York synagogues and shoot down National Guard aircraft.

United States District Judge Colleen McMahon granted James Cromitie, 58, compassionate release from prison on Friday, six months after she ordered the release of his three co-defendants, together known as the Newburgh Four, for similar reasons.

Four individuals from the riverside city an hour’s drive north of New York City were convicted of terrorism in 2010. Cromitie had completed 15 years of his 25-year minimum sentence. The New York-based court reduced Cromitie’s sentence to time served + 90 days.

According to Judge McMahon, Cromitie was a small-time “grifter” who was destitute and jobless when he was recruited into the FBI-led operation and supplied phony explosives to place in return for $250,000 in the “jihadist mission.” According to the court, Cromitie assigned the other three guys to function as lookouts.

“The three men were recruited so that Cromitie could conspire with someone,” the judge said. “The real lead conspirator was the United States. …. The FBI invented the conspiracy; identified the targets; manufactured the ordnance.”

Cromitie’s attorney, Kerry Lawrence, said Saturday that he had not yet been able to contact his client, but that Cromitie’s family was thrilled.

Prosecutors in the high-profile case claimed the Newburgh defendants spent months studying areas and obtaining what they believed to be explosives and a surface-to-air missile with the intention of shooting down aircraft at the Air National Guard installation in Newburgh and bombing synagogues in the Bronx.

They were detained after reportedly placing “bombs” with inert explosives provided by the FBI.

Critics claim that federal investigators had entrapped a vulnerable group of men who had just served time in jail.

In a harsh decision, McMahon said that the FBI manufactured the plot and designated the targets.

She said that Cromitie and his co-defendants “would not have, and could not have, devised on their own a crime involving missiles that would have warranted the 25-year sentence the court was forced to impose.”

“The notion that Cromitie was selected as a ‘leader’ by the co-defendants is inconceivable, given his well-documented buffoonery and ineptitude,” she wrote.

Cromitie was duped into the fake plot by government informant Shaheed Hussain, whose work has long been condemned by civil rights organizations.

McMahon described him as “most unsavory” and a “villain” sent by the government to “troll among the poorest and weakest of men for ‘terrorists’ who might prove susceptible to an offer of much-needed cash in exchange for committing a faux crime.”

Hussain also collaborated with the FBI on a sting targeting an Albany, New York, pizza restaurant owner and an imam, involving a loan from a phony missile sale. Both men, who claimed they were duped, were convicted of money laundering and conspiring to help a terrorist organization.

Hussain received renewed attention in 2018 when a stretch limousine crashed in rural Schoharie, New York, killing 20 passengers. Hussain owned the limousine firm, which was run by his son, Nauman Hussain.

Nauman Hussain was convicted of manslaughter last year and is now spending five to fifteen years in jail.

Cromitie’s attorney, Kerry Lawrence, said Saturday that he had not yet been able to contact his client, but that Cromitie’s family was thrilled.

“I’m obviously thrilled that Mr. Cromitie will be released from prison, but still believe that his conviction was entirely the product of government entrapment,” Lawrence wrote in an email. “Seeing as he was hounded and manipulated by the government informant way more than any of … the other defendants who were previously ordered released, it would have been shocking if Judge McMahon didn’t grant our motion.”

In other news, stunning J6 surveillance footage is raising serious questions of federal law enforcement coordination to time the “discovery” of the RNC and DNC pipe bombs on January 6 with the convening of the Electoral College.