Khalil Abu-Rayyan was in love.
Text messages his attorney recently released show the 21-year-old Dearborn Heights man was thrilled to meet online a woman named Ghadda, whom he planned to marry.
“Every time I close my eyes, I see you right by me,” he texted to her on Dec. 13. “Words can’t explain my love for you.”
But the person Abu-Rayyan thought was a Pakistani-American Muslim woman who loved him actually was an undercover FBI agent. Soon, the person acting as a love interest cut off the relationship, leaving Abu-Rayyan distraught. The next month, another woman, identified as a 19-year-old Iraqi Sunni Muslim, interacted with Abu-Rayyan online, also claiming she loved him. During their discussions, they chatted about ISIS and Abu-Rayyan mentioned attacking a Detroit church.
But that person, too, was an undercover FBI employee, said his attorney, Todd Shanker.
“The government resorted to a mind-boggling double-team against Rayyan with not one, but two young, fictitious Islamic women, who mercilessly manipulated him and pretended to be potential wives to Rayyan, a young U.S. citizen with no prior criminal history before the government’s aggressive involvement in his personal life,” Shanker wrote in a court brief filed Friday in an attempt to get him released on bond.
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Image courtesy of Wayne County