July 4, 2022

Lawyer for guys billed with impersonating brokers states feds are latching on to ‘conspiracy theories’

Two Washington, D.C., adult males accused of posing as federal agents to ingratiate themselves with Secret Service agents assigned to the White Dwelling are simply legislation enforcement buffs who pose no threat to anyone, their attorneys mentioned for the duration of a bail hearing Monday.

The government has “jumped to the wildest conspiracy theories imaginable” with its allegations in opposition to Arian Taherzadeh and Haider Ali, protection lawyer Michelle Peterson advised a federal decide.

Her reviews came in response to a court filing past week in which prosecutors warned that allowing for Taherzadeh, 40, and Ali, 35, to be freed on bail pending demo could pose a “risk to national protection.”

Prosecutors mentioned the adult males, who are charged with impersonating Office of Homeland Security agents, had firearms, ammunition, entire body armor, tactical equipment and surveillance devices in their flats in a creating that’s home to a selection of agents from other agencies.

Arian Taherzadeh appeared virtually ahead of Choose Michael Harvey on April 8, 2022.Invoice Hennessy

In a filing arguing he ought to be unveiled to property confinement to his father’s house in Virginia, Taherzadeh’s lawyers prompt he was all converse, and that his statements of getting a federal agent were being “an embarrassing misrepresentation that acquired out of command.”

A person protection lawyer observed in the filing that Taherzadeh voluntarily spoke with investigators following his arrest, and as “he advised legislation enforcement in his prolonged job interview, he had no intention of compromising any federal agent.”

“He acknowledged gifts to brokers with whom he experienced a real friendship. He acted out of a motivation for friendship, not to impact any person. He hardly ever requested for just about anything from the officers he befriended, under no circumstances gave them something for the function of getting a little something in reaction, and deeply regrets his involvement in this matter,” the filing mentioned.

Prosecutors have claimed the FBI is investigating no matter whether the pair was getting cash from overseas, although Taherzadeh’s law firm contends there was “no big sum of dollars included.” The lawyer also famous that while Taherzadeh rented 5 residences in the creating, he hardly ever paid lease and owes the landlord in excess of $220,000. Taherzadeh also told another investigator his private detective organization was going out of business, according to court docket filings.

Gregory Smith, an attorney for Haider, recommended in a independent courtroom submitting that his consumer may possibly have legitimately considered he was carrying out perform for the federal authorities as element of his operate for Taherzadeh’s business, United States Special Police LLC.

Haider Ali appeared virtually before Judge Michael Harvey on April 8, 2022.
Haider Ali appeared almost right before Decide Michael Harvey on April 8, 2022.Monthly bill Hennessy

Smith pointed out that Taherzadeh is accused of duping a lot of federal brokers into generating them believe he was a single of them.

“The Governing administration itself has absent to wonderful lengths in describing how quite a few professional federal legislation enforcement agents — people it notes are formally experienced to glance for and realize deceptions this kind of as this — nevertheless fell for this ruse, with 4 U.S. Magic formula Service brokers even positioned on administrative leave as a consequence,” the filing states. “If all of individuals seasoned federal agents, with their years or even a long time of encounter, did not see by Taherzadeh’s statements, why is it good to count on far more from Mr. Ali, a superior school graduate with no faculty diploma and none of their formalized coaching?”

Smith requested that his consumer, a married father of 4 younger small children, be allowed to keep in home confinement.

Attorneys for both equally males also pointed out that the costs against their clientele carry a utmost jail sentence of a few several years and no minimal, indicating they might not see any jail time even if they are convicted.

In court previous 7 days, prosecutor Joshua Rothstein said the crime is a “serious offense” and the pair pose “a serious risk.”

Investigators say the pair ended up “lavishing gifts” on Top secret Company agents, together with letting them continue to be in an apartment rent cost-free.

Taherzadeh had a number of guns when he shouldn’t have experienced any because of former domestic violence conviction, and investigators found unlawful significant-capability publications for their weapons when they searched their residences, prosecutors claimed.

Taherzadeh’s lawyer argued that the guns should not be a cause for maintaining him detained due to the fact they are no for a longer period in his possession.

Prosecutors also highlighted Ali’s travels to Iran and Iraq in modern years, and claimed he allegedly told a witness in the case that he experienced ties to Pakistan’s intelligence agency.

Ali’s lawyer submitted letters to the choose from his family members, saying that he visited Iran and Iraq for spiritual functions and that he has no ties to Pakistani intelligence.

Magistrate Decide G. Michael Harvey requested prosecutors to address no matter if the pair can be held in residence confinement Tuesday, and said he’ll rule on the issue just after that.

Reuters contributed.