FBI Says Man's Testimony Of Group's Plans For Attacks Was Hoax

DETROIT (AP) - Federal officials say a Detroit-area man lied in grand jury testimony when he claimed he was part of a terrorist group that planned to blow up locations in Michigan and Ohio.

Gussan Abraham Jarrar, 42, told a Detroit federal grand jury in August that he and seven other Detroit-area men planned to blow up Cedar Point amusement park in Sandusky, Ohio, Mackinac Bridge and the federal building in Detroit, The Detroit News reported Tuesday.

But federal authorities -- who spent months investigating his claims -- say he lied and that no such group exists. A grand jury in Detroit last week indicted Jarrar on three counts of perjury. Each charge is punishable by five years in prison.

Jarrar has been in the United States since 1979. He was in custody at the Macomb County Jail on a drug charge in August when he was called to testify before the grand jury.

He claimed an anti-Israeli group called Whatever It Takes planned to set off bombs across Michigan and at Cedar Point.

"They were going to start acting on behalf of the people back in the Middle East. Somebody has to listen," Jarrar told the grand jury. "There were plans to blow up a few structures in Detroit, you know, in the metro area, kind of set up cars with bombs in different locations."

He claimed the group had been active for at least two years and had purchased material to make the bombs.

FBI Special Agent Greg Suhajda said the bureau notified Cedar Point and the Mackinac Bridge Authority of Jarrar's claims last summer. Agents interviewed the seven local men named by Jarrar, and none had any connection to any terrorist plot. All have been cleared.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)