Detroit, Michigan - Amor M. Ftouhi, 51, of Quebec, Canada, was sentenced Thursday by U.S. District Judge Matthew F. Leitman to life in prison for committing an act of terrorism transcending national boundaries and two other offenses in conjunction with his attack on a Bishop Airport police officer on June 21, 2017. Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider for the Eastern District of Michigan and Special Agent in Charge Timothy R. Slater of the FBI’s Detroit Field Office made the announcement.
“Ftouhi came to the United States to kill American police officers, and then brutally attacked an airport police officer in Flint,” said Assistant Attorney General Demers. “The National Security Division is committed to doing all that it can to protect our women and men in uniform from terrorist violence on our soil, and this sentence is a gratifying reflection of the seriousness of the defendant’s conduct. I want to thank the prosecutors and law enforcement partners who made this result possible.”
“The evidence at trial demonstrated that Ftouhi had a ‘mission’ to kill as many American law enforcement as possible in an act of violent jihad,” stated U.S. Attorney Schneider. “The sentence today reflects his extreme dangerousness and the need to prevent him from further acts of violence in the future. Today’s sentence is the result of the hard work of those who investigated and prosecuted the case, including our foreign partners in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.”
“The FBI's highest priority remains preventing and combating terrorism here in the U.S. and around the world,” said Special Agent in Charge Slater. “Today's sentencing marks the end of an almost-two year effort - on behalf of the FBI, our partner agencies on the FBI Detroit Joint Terrorism Task Force, and our foreign partners in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police - to hold Mr. Ftouhi accountable for his attempt to kill a police officer in an act of terror. I would like to thank all of our state, federal and international partners for their essential contributions to this case and to acknowledge again the heroic actions of the civilians and law enforcement officers who were present on the day of the attack and likely saved the officer’s life."
Ftouhi was convicted by a federal jury on Nov. 13, 2018. According to evidence presented at trial, Ftouhi entered the United States from Canada on a professed “mission” for the purpose of killing American police officers in the United States. Before entering the United States on June 16, 2017, while in Canada, Ftouhi conducted online research of American gun laws and for gun shows in Michigan. Ftouhi subsequently traveled to Michigan where he was unsuccessful in repeated attempts to purchase a gun and purchased a knife instead. On June 20, 2017, Ftouhi approached the victim, who is a lieutenant with the Flint Bishop Airport police and was in full uniform, and stabbed the police officer in the neck twice with a knife. Ftouhi referenced killings in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan, and yelled “Allahu Akbar.” After his arrest, Ftouhi told law enforcement that he was a “soldier of Allah,” subscribed to the ideology of Al Qaeda and Usama bin Laden and that his plan had been to kill the victim, steal his gun and kill other police officers in the airport. The police officer sustained life-threatening injuries, but survived the attack.
The investigation was conducted by the Detroit Joint Terrorism Task Force, which is led by the FBI with the assistance of the FBI Flint Resident Agency, the Michigan State Police and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Additional assistance was provided by the Flint Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Jules DePorre, Cathleen M. Corken, and Craig Wininger of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Michigan with the assistance of the Counterterrorism Section of the National Security Division of the Department of Justice.