The FBI announced the arrest of an 18-year-old New Jersey man following threats he posted against the Jewish community last week. File Photo courtesy U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation
Nov. 10 (UPI) -- An 18-year-old man in New Jersey was arrested on Thursday after posting threats to attack a synagogue on social media last week.
The FBI issued a warning of threats to the Jewish community after learning of the posts. New Jersey police were on high alert after receiving the notice from the FBI, deploying extra patrols particularly near synagogues.
On Thursday morning, Omar Alkattoul, 18, of Sayreville, N.J. was arrested for posting the threats.
"No one should be targeted for violence or with acts of hate because of how they worship," U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger said in a press release.
"According to the complaint, this defendant used social media to send a manifesto containing a threat to attack a synagogue based on his hatred of Jews."
Alkattoul allegedly sent a document he created to another user on a social media app, which described his intentions to attack a synagogue along with his motives.
He identified himself as a Muslim and wrote, "This attack was just to remind the Jews that as long as 1 Muslim remains in this world they will never live a pleasant life until the Muslims in Palestine, Syria, West Africa, and South Asia are living a pleasant life."
The charge against Alkattoul, transmitting a threat in interstate and foreign commerce, carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. He was scheduled to appear before a federal court in Newark later Thursday.
Special agents from the FBI's Joint Terrorism Task force were assisted by several agencies in identifying and arresting Alkattoul, including the Saylerville Police Department.
Alkattoul's threat comes amid several notable incidents of antisemitism making waves throughout the mainstream.
Embattled celebrity Kanye West lost several endorsements and business clients after an antisemitic tirade across multiple social media platforms.
NBA star Kyrie Irving was suspended last week after refusing to apologize for promoting a film on Amazon laced with antisemitic messages.