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Photograph of Deputy Director John S. Pistole

John S. Pistole
Deputy Director
Federal Bureau of Investigation

Press Conference on Najibullah Zazi Investigation
Washington, D.C.

February 22, 2010

Good afternoon. Today’s plea is a significant milestone in this ongoing and complex case.

As Attorney General Holder just outlined, Mr. Zazi presented a substantial threat to the security of the United States. This case has given us all greater insight into the evolving nature of the terrorist threat we face today.

It has both domestic and international aspects. It shows how individuals here in the U.S. with the intent to do us harm can acquire the means to do so and then take steps to carry out an attack.

Our success to date in unraveling this plot is the result of the dedication and commitment of the law enforcement and intelligence communities, particularly the Joint Terrorism Task Forces in Denver and New York City.

On behalf of the FBI, I want to especially thank the dedicated agents, analysts, and officers serving on those task forces, as well as a number of our legal attachés overseas, the FBI Laboratory, and the Bureau’s computer forensic teams, among others. Each worked diligently and around the clock to obtain and share information and carefully piece together each element of the case.

I’d also like to thank the National Security Agency and the CIA for their outstanding contributions to this inter-agency effort. And the Department of Homeland Security, working through CBP (U.S. Customs and Border Protection) and ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement), provided critical assistance throughout the investigation.

Finally, I want to thank the team of talented prosecutors serving in the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices in New York and Colorado and the attorneys in DOJ (Department of Justice) in the Counterterrorism Section and in the Office of Intelligence for their exceptional and continued work on this case.

While today’s plea marks a significant success, it reminds us that our work is not finished. This case is ongoing, and we will continue to work side by side with our partners to see that justice is done and our nation remains safe.

Thank you.

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