Summary of Michael Riconosciuto's Information
Presented in Terrorism Cover Up in America
By Ted Gunderson
Sept. 30, 2003
Michael Riconosciuto, an inmate at the FCI in Allenwood, Pennsylvania,
who has contacts in the Middle East, informed this reporter that in March
2001 (well prior to September 11), he informed the FBI of the identity of
the organizer of certain terrorist activities in the United States, the identities
of those who furnished false identification to the terrorists, an aviation
company with which the terrorists were dealing, information concerning the
smuggling of shoulder-fired missiles into the United States, and other sensitive
matters. The FBI agent who interviewed Riconosciuto later admitted that he
did not follow up on any of this information. According to Riconosciuto, if
properLy investigated, the events of 911 may not have occurred. Riconosciuto
also made a confidential source inside the terrorist group available to the
FBI. When interviewed by the FBI, this person reportedly was threatened with
prosecution and deported. Riconosciuto claimed that the same FBI agent later
told him that he (Riconosciuto) was wasting his time, that he was a conspiracy
theorist seeking publicity, that he did not investigate Riconosciuto's information,
and threatened him with prosecution
Michael J. Riconosciuto, who has been in federal custody since
1991, furnished the following information to Ted Gunderson on January 3,4,
and 5, 2003:
1. He has been active in the intelligence community for years,
and has a number of contacts in the Middle East, including individuals who
have been, or are now actively involved, with AI Qaeda, the Islamic Jihad
(Committee), and the International Islamic Front
2. In February 2000, he learned that the Royal Canadian Mounted
Police (RCMP) were interested in interviewing him by telephone. At the time,
Riconosciuto was at the FCI in Coleman, Florida. As soon as he agreed to the
interview, he was told by a Bureau of Prisons (BOP) staff member that he should
not have agreed to the interview, was threatened by staff and other inmates,
and told not to cooperate with the RCMP and a homicide detective from Hercules,
California, who was working with the RCMP. The subject of the interview related
to the murder of one of Riconosciuto's friends, and national security issues
in the U.S and Canada. The BOP staff threatened him with administrative reprimands.
3. In spite of the threats, Riconosciuto agreed to the interview on February
7,2000. Within one hour following the interview, he was charged with a disciplinary
4. This infraction was expunged at a BOP hearing on February 11,2000.
5. Within an hour of this hearing, the FBI charged Riconosciuto with solicitation
of murder; the charge relating to the expunged incident.
6. Because of this allegation, Riconosciuto was placed in solitary confinement
for several months.
7. Upon his return to the general prison population, Riconosciuto was transferred
to the FCI Allenwood, Pennsylvania, with the reputation of being a "threat"
to BOP staff members.
8. On February 5, 2001, Riconosciuto wrote a certified letter (Exhibit
A) to his attorney, Don Bailey, that he had contact with someone in an
Islamic group called the "Base" (AI Qaeda), and that said group
was currently in preparation for an attack in the United States, but would
not divulge specific details unless the U.S. Government granted immunity from
prosecution to his sources. In this letter, Riconosciuto also stated that
he had an inside source who could furnish information concerning the handling
of false IDs and passports for the group.
9. On February 13, 2001, Riconosciuto sent a certified letter
B) to Congressman Bryan Baird (D- W A), in an effort to expedite the reporting
of his information to the appropriate authorities. Note in the referenced
exhibit the urgency of the matter according to Riconosciuto, and his identification
of sources (one of which has been intentionally blanked by this reportei}
10. On February 19,2001, Louis Buffardi, a second attorney of Riconosciuto's,
wrote to Secretary of State Colin Powell, with a cc to Attorney General John
C), to the effect that he had a client with information concerning an
imminent terrorist attack in the United States, and Buffardi asked that someone
other than the FBI obtain the details from his client.
11. I. On February 20, 200 I, Riconosciuto filed BOP Form 148 (Exhibit D),
for use of a private telephone to handle sensitive conversations relating
to matters mentioned in 8, 9, and 10, above. Riconosciuto informed this reporter
that among his. reasons for this request was also the fact that he had a 30-hour
"window" relati_g to the shipment of 37 Soviet-made missiles (StreIa-3
and Igla-9) that had been shipped from Bulgaria to Colombia, and thence, to
Canada, destined for Thabet Aviation in Quebec City. He further informed this
reporter that attorney Buffardi passed this information to the FBI and U.S.
Attorney in Chicago, Illinois.
12. Once he received his private telephone, Riconosciuto told this reporter
that he had conversations concerning the afore-mentioned topics with, among
others, John O'Neill, former FBI terrorist expert in charge of security for
the World Trade Center. Others with whom Riconosciuto talked included:
13. On an unrecalled day in March 2001, Riconosciuto was visited by Special
Agent (SA) Keith Cutri of the Williamsport, Pennsylvania, FBI resident agency.
14. Riconosciuto furnished SA Cutri with the identification of an individual
in New Jersey (unidentified herein to eliminate damage or complications to
future official investigations) who:
a. Was coordinating forthcoming terrorist attacks on the
b. Had information on the movement of Soviet-made shoulder-fired missiles
into the United States.
c. Was coordinating forthcoming skyjackings.
d. Was coordinating bombings and espionage.
e. Knew the identities of "sleepers" in the United States and
15. Riconosciuto also furnished SA Cutri with information on
a false IDl ring in Montreal, Canada, and in New Jersey, and could furnish
the exact false ID of 30 terrorists who had been chosen for actions inside
the United States.
16. Riconosciuto further told SA Cutri that the 37 Soviet-made
missiles were being handled through Thabet Aviation in Quebec City, Canada,
which also brokered old but serviceable aircraft (Swearingtons, DC-9s, 747s,
and high-performance military) to be used in drug-running and future terrorist
attacks in a so-called "40 minute" war scenario by using aircraft
as flying "missiles".
17. Riconosciuto further informed SA Cutri that terrorists were taking flight-training
in various types of aircraft brokered by Thabet, and if given immunity for
himself and his contacts, he would provide specific information where said
training was taking place and the identities of the students involved.
18. [blacked out area for the sanitized public report]
19. In his discussion with SA Cutri, other than the immunity request, RicQnosciuto
attached no other conditions to his possible future cooperation with the FBI.
20. [blacked out ]
21. In the period between his March 2001 interview by SA Cutri and September
13, 2001, Riconosciuto heard nothing from the FBI or any other federal agency.
22. Riconosciuto was shocked by what happened on September 11, 2001, especially
in view of the information he furnished to SA Cutri in March. In his opinion,
if properly handled, 911 would not have happened.
23. On September 13, 2001, SA Cutri and a second, unidentified FBI agent inter
viewed Riconosciuto in the Legal Room of FCI Allenwood. In spite of what had
just taken place in New York and Washington on September 11, and the information
Riconosciuto had already volunteered in March,
SA Cutri: posed the following questions and accusations to Michael Riconosciuto:
a. Wanted to know why Riconosciuto was bothering the FBI
and wasting its time.
b. Accused Riconosciuto of seeking publicity.
c. Accused Riconosciuto of being "anti-FBI' and "anti-government".
d. Called Riconosciuto a "conspiracy theorist".
e. Called Riconosciuto a "know-it-all",
f. Called Riconosciuto a "hoaxer" and threatened him with prosecution.
g. Stated that he discontinued inquiry into the information Riconosciuto
gave him in March, 2001 because information Riconosciuto gave him about
a staff member at FCI Coleman was untrue.
h. Stated that Riconosciuto was still under investigation because of threats
he made against a staff member at Coleman. Riconosciuto took this as a threat.
24. In view of 23, above, Riconosciuto stated that he did not
wish to continue this interview without the presence of his counsel, to which
SA Cutri replied that as a prisoner, he did not have an absolute right to
counsel, which Riconosciuto interpreted as another threat.
26. [blacked out ]
27. [blacked out]
28. In the summer of 2002, Riconosciuto secured the assistance of Senator
George Allen (R- VA) in an attempt to nail down the date in March 2001 on
which he was interviewed for the first time by SA Cutri. Attached as Exhibit
F is a copy of the FBI's official response. Note that while it confirms the
September 13, 2001 interview, it "dances" around specific dates
of any other interviews.
29. In view of the above, on September 23, 2002, this reporter wrote a letter
(Exhibit G) to Senator Allen, asking him to contact the FBI to determine the
exact date that Riconosciuto was interviewed in March 2001, and whether or
not this interview took place as a result of attorney Buffardi's letter to
Secretary of State Powell.
30. According to Riconosciuto as well as an independent source, following
the letter referenced above, and without warrants, the FBI seized the computers
and other items from persons who were in contact with Riconosciuto, but who
are not professionally knowledgeable about "terrorism". The FBI
also demanded all letters, documents, correspondence, books, etc., and also
inquired about any "Arab" contacts of Riconosciuto's about whom
they might be knowledgeable. They were also told that Riconosciuto and Ted
Gunderson were making irresponsible statements about the terrorism "issue"
and that any help given to Riconosciuto or Gunderson might have criminal consequences.
31. It is this reporter's professional opinion that the possible purpose of
such raids and seizures are part of a campaign to eliminate any trace or proof
of official knowledge of the type claimed by Riconosciuto, with specific reference
to his interview by SA Cutri in March 2001. This view is reinforced by President
Bush's recent "go-ahead" to the formation of an official board of
inquiry into the failings of U.S. intelligence that allowed 911 to happen.
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