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Federal investigators: L.A. airport shooting a terrorist act

Hesham Mohamed Hadayet
Hesham Mohamed Hadayet  


From Charles Feldman
CNN Los Angeles Bureau

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) -- Federal investigators have concluded that the July Fourth shooting at the El Al ticket counter at Los Angeles International Airport was a terrorist act carried out by a lone gunman bent on becoming a martyr, sources told CNN Wednesday.

The report came two months to the day after Hesham Mohamed Hadayet, a 41-year-old Egyptian national, opened fire at the airport, killing two Israelis and wounding four others, including the El Al security guard who shot him dead.

During the extensive worldwide investigation, the sources said, investigators found no evidence linking Hadayet to any terrorist group.

They characterized the shooting as an act of terrorism because Hadayet espoused anti-Israeli views and was opposed to U.S. policy in the Middle East, the sources said.

"He wanted to be a martyr and take as many people with him as possible," one source said.

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Federal investigators have concluded that the July Fourth shooting at the El Al ticket counter at Los Angeles International Airport was a terrorist act. CNN's Charles Feldman reports (September 5)

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EXTRA INFORMATION
Map: Where the shooting took place 
 

Investigators also concluded he was driven by a number of other factors that day: His limousine business in California was failing, his marriage was suffering, and after his wife and children left for Egypt he was alone and depressed on his birthday -- the day of the attacks.

The final decision whether to label the shooting as a terrorist act by a lone gunman rests with FBI headquarters in Washington, which will review the conclusion of its investigators before making an announcement.

The FBI has said previously that Hadayet had in his possession a .45-caliber handgun, which he used in the shooting; a 9 mm handgun; a 6-inch knife; and extra ammunition and magazines for the guns.



 
 
 
 


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