Coalition Forces Apprehend Suspects,
Take Down Bombing Cells

(AFPS) Coalition forces apprehended five suspected members of an Iranian-backed terrorist group today during two separate operations in New Baghdad, and captured seven wanted men and 18 additional suspects in operations yesterday and today throughout Iraq, military officials reported.

Acting on intelligence information, coalition forces targeted suspected key members of the Khataib Hezbollah network in two separate locations today. The network allegedly funnels weapons and materiel into Iraq from Iran, which is then used to conduct attacks against coalition and Iraqi forces, officials said.

Coalition forces entered a building where one suspect was believed to be, and they apprehended him along with three associates. The suspect had $1,800, a 9 mm hand gun, an AK-47 assault rifle and numerous passports. Other coalition forces captured the other targeted suspect nearby without incident.

An operation yesterday netted one alleged terrorist believed to facilitate car bomb operations in the Baghdad area. He also is believed to have connections to one of the city’s car-bomb cell leaders. Two additional suspects were apprehended during the operation.

In a related operation today, coalition forces netted another Baghdad car-bomb cell leader who targets the Monsour area. Three additional suspected terrorists were detained during the operation.

Yesterday in Mosul, coalition forces detained six suspects, including one wanted man who is believed to facilitate the movement of terrorist funds between Iraq and neighboring countries. Intelligence reports also suggest that the suspect has connections to the regional al-Qaida leader. Additionally, the suspect allegedly aids the movement of suicide bombers from Iran to Iraq, officials said.

Coalition forces detained three suspected terrorists in Mosul today during two related operations targeting a wanted man with multiple links to al-Qaida financial networks. Coalition forces also targeted al-Qaida finance networks during an operation in Baghdad today. During that operation, an alleged terrorist financier who is believed to be a direct conspirator with a longtime regional al-Qaida leader was detained along with another suspect.

During an operation outside Ash Shurah, about 25 miles southeast of Mosul, coalition forces detained an alleged terrorist believed to be associated with multiple al-Qaida leaders. Four additional suspects were detained during the operation.

A coalition operation today in Dujayl, about 35 miles north of Baghdad, targeted al-Qaida communication networks. Forces captured a wanted man allegedly connected to a senior al-Qaida in Iraq courier.

Coalition forces operating alongside the Iraqi army in Kirkuk today netted a wanted terrorist believed to have connections with foreign terrorist organizations. During the operation, the man identified himself and forces seized multiple weapons, including a sub-machine gun.

In other operations:

— Coalition forces captured two Iranian-backed illegal militia suspects during an operation in Kut, about 125 miles southeast of Baghdad. Coalition forces targeted one suspect believed to be a roadside-bomb expert responsible for numerous attacks against coalition forces. Forces approached the wanted man’s location, where they encountered two suspected associates. During questioning, the two suspects appeared to be intoxicated to the point where they could not stand, and they were belligerent with coalition forces. The suspects were detained without incident.

— “Sons of Iraq” citizen security group members manning a checkpoint discovered a mobile cache in Salahuddin province. The vehicle carrying the explosives was designed for emplacing roadside bombs from within its interior. The cache included 18 RKG-3 anti-tank hand grenades, 15 RKG-3 fuse handles, a tin of RKG-3 detonators, and a 107 mm rocket.

— The Muqdadiyah special weapons and tactics team arrested the mayor of Abu Sayda after they discovered a weapons cache at his orchard house in the Diyala province. Among items found were an improvised claymore mine, an RPG launcher, a 60 mm mortar tube, a 60 mm mortar tripod, a 2.75-inch rocket, an RPG round, two 120 mm high-explosive mortar rounds, 12 60 mm high-explosive mortar rounds, two 81 mm high-explosive mortar rounds, two homemade bombs, 35 non-electric detonators, five 60 mm mortar fuses, three electric detonators, a stick of C4 explosive, two fragmentation grenades, three AK-47 assault rifle barrels, two machine gun barrels and 10 bombs designed to pierce armor-hulled vehicles.

— Soldiers from the 4th Infantry Division’s Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, conducted a targeted raid using actionable intelligence to apprehend two suspected criminals living in southern Baghdad. Two pistols were confiscated from the detainees, who reportedly are responsible for sectarian violence in southwestern Baghdad.

— Multinational Division Baghdad soldiers from the 25th Infantry Division’s 1st Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, detained a suspected roadside-bomb cell leader and his brother north of Taji. The suspect is believed to have orchestrated an Aug. 10 suicide-bomb attack in Tarmiyah, as well as multiple small-arms attacks, officials said. The suspect also is alleged to have secured weapons for use against Iraqi and coalition forces.

— The Iraqi special weapons and tactics unit in Amarah arrested a suspected criminal after receiving information on the individual’s location from various sources. Iraqi forces conducted the mission without coalition forces present. Following the apprehension, the Amarah SWAT unit searched the individual, his home and job locations. They found several items that may lead to future arrests, officials said.

— Hillah SWAT arrested a suspected criminal cell leader while serving an Iraqi Interior Ministry warrant in the Hamza area. The man is a suspect in small-arms attacks against Iraqi and coalition forces, and is said to be a specialist in constructing electrical components for roadside bombs. While searching for another individual named in the warrant, SWAT detained three men in a home where they uncovered homemade explosives, including a wooden crate wired to explode. U.S. Special Forces, who assisted in the operation, entered another home when they came under fire from within the house. They returned fire, killing the suspect.

— Iraqi special operations forces in New Baghdad captured a suspected criminal leader of a roadside-bomb cell.

— The newly formed Amarah SWAT team captured a man suspected of leading a criminal cell leader and facilitating the acquisition of Iranian weapons by other criminal groups in Iraq.