Federal authorities later denied there were any connections between terrorist groups and Alidai Al-Hamdani, 27, who was picked up at his home Wednesday on a Maricopa County warrant for a probation violation and unlawful flight.
"There is no information to suggest that Al-Hamdani is tied to any terrorist organization," Pat Schneider, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office in Phoenix, told the Republic. "I think it's nothing more than a miscommunication."
Initial news reports on the arrest had noted that a Phoenix police detective assigned to an FBI fugitive task force, had described Al-Hamdani in court records as an "associate of foreign terrorist" groups who "moves from one location to another to avoid arrest."
An FBI official later said that while Al-Hamdani's name had been in a computer criminal database as a "person of interest," their concerns about him were satisfied during questioning following his arrest.
"Our concerns were resolved during that interview," Special Agent-in-Charge Charlene Thornton told the Republic. "I think it's safe to say he is no longer of investigative interest to us. ... The system worked."
Al-Hamdani was not available for comment as he remained in custody at the grim Maricopa County Jail on an unspecified probation violation. Al-Hamdani had been sentenced to three years probation after being arrested for leading police on a high-speed police pursuit last summer following an argument with his girlfriend.
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