The Dubai Money Laundry

The First Money Trail: July 19-September 18, 2000

The first transfers of substantial sums of from the United Arab Emirates was to Marwan al- Shehhi and Mohammed Atta. They arrived in Florida, al-Shehhi from Germany, Atta from the Czech Republic, in June 2000. On June 29, 2000, $4,790 was wired from the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) to al-Shehhi. With it, Al-Shehhi opened up a joint account in his and Atta's name at the Florida SunTrust bank. Both men also had set up accounts in Dubai, Al-Shehhi at a branch office of the Hong Kong Shanghai Bank (HSBC Holdings);d Atta at the branch office of Citibank. Money could be deposited in these accounts by cash, check or wire from anonymous sources and then be transferred to their Florida account by wire.

That summer $109,440 arrived in their joint Florida bank account. $9,985 on July 19th. $9,485 came on August 7, 2000. $19,985 came on August 30, 2000. $69,985 came on September 18, 2000. During this period, they used the money to pay for their training at two airports on small aircraft.

This $109,440 had been transferred to them from a person named "Mustafa Ahmed,"-- a name as common in the Emirates as "John Smith" in America. To provide the money, "Mustafa Ahmed" did not to provide any other biographical data, so he was untraceable.

The Second Money Trail: Summer 2001

On June 25, 2001, someone using a cash deposit opened a checking account in the name of Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi at the Dubai branch of the Standard Chartered Bank. At about the same time, someone named Fayez Ahmed used a cash deposit to open a savings account and checking account at the same branch. Fayez Ahmed then gave power of attorney over his account to Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi, who shipped VISA and ATM cards drawn on that account to Fayez Ahmed in Florida. So Ahmed could get money and buy tickets in the US which would be paid by an account in Dubai. Beginning August 1st, Ahmed used this card to pay expenses and on August 22, 2001, to obtain approximately $4,900 cash. (The money had been deposited into his Standard Chartered Bank account only the day before.) This card was used to reserve tickets for hijackers on flights scheduled for September 11th.

The hijackers also received substantial amounts of cash from unknown sources. According to the FBI's analysis of their cash flow, the deposits into their bank accounts totaled $303,481.63. $167,300, about 55% of the total, was deposited in cash or traveler checks, $103,200, while 34% of the total, was in the form of wire transfers, which included transfers into the SunTrust from the United Arab Emirates and $30,300. The remainder characterized as "miscellaneous," which included refunds and checks from third parties.

The FBI calculated $45,550 was spent on airline tickets, $6,100 was spent on car rentals, $39,500 was spent on "aviation," which included flight lessons, plane rentals and equipment purchases, $36,440 was given by checks to individuals, about $33,000 was spent on lodging and $33,400 was characterized as "miscellaneous," which included some daily living expenses.

The Money Repatriation, September 2001

On September 6, 2001, $8,055 was wired from Fayez Ahmed's Florida SunTrust account to the Standard Chartered Bank account. On September 8,9 and 10, 2001, Marwan al-Shehhi and Atta wired about $12,860 to "Mustafa Ahmed" in the U.A.E. On September 11, 2001, in U.A.E., at about 9:22 a.m. local time (the early morning hours of Eastern Daylight Time), "Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi" shifted $6,534 from the $8,055 in Fayez Ahmed's Standard Chartered Bank account into his own account, using a check dated September 10, 2001 and signed by Fayez Ahmed and withdrew approximately $1,361, nearly all the remaining balance in Ahmed's account and vanished from the United Arab Emirates.

No trace was found either of Fayez Ahmed. ( "Banihammad Fayez" boarded Flight 175 on September 11th who the FBI assumed was Fayez Ahmed.)

What remains unknown is:

1. Who is Mustafa Ahmed?

2. Who is Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi?

3. What happened to Fayez Ahmed?

4. Who supplied them with the money they transferred?

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