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Saudi pilot who killed US Navy sailors on FL base was Al Qaeda terrorist and spent years planning

Published: May 20, 2020
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The Royal Saudi Air Force member behind the December 2019 shooting at Naval Air Station Pensacola had “significant ties” to the terror group Al Qaeda for years before conducting the deadly attack that killed three victims and injured eight others.

During a Monday morning press conference, Attorney General Bill Barr said Mohammed Alshamrani’s phones “contained information previously unknown to us that definitively establishes Alshamrani’s significant ties to Al Qaeda and the Arabian Peninsula not only before the attack, but before he even arrived in the United States.”

Alshamrani’s two iPhones were recently unlocked by federal technicians after months of attempts and refusals from Apple to assist in the process. Barr said that the recently obtained information from Alshamrani’s phones has led to counterterrorism operations against one of Alshamrani’s overseas associates in Yemen, and revealed significant information about the terrorist himself.

FBI Director Christopher Wray said the Navy base attack was a “brutal culmination of years of planning and preparation.”

“We now know enough to see Alshamrani for what he was — a determined AQAP [Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula] terrorist who spent years preparing to attack us.”

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