SAN JOSE (KCBS/AP)— The FBI confirmed Monday that a man who led a South Bay mosque has been arrested in Mexico on a parole violation and is in federal custody.
According to the FBI, Rafic Labboun was arrested over the weekend along with two known agents from the terrorist organization Hezbollah. He was transported to a prison in Houston and made a brief court appearance on Monday.
A judge ordered Labboun to be returned to the Bay Area.
Labboun was a once prominent Northern California Muslim leader and was an imam with the Shia Association of Bay Area (SABA) in San Jose.
KCBS’ Jeffrey Schaub Reports:
|FBI spokesperson Julianne Sohn|
“It was determined that he was wanted out of a district of California for a probation violation,” San Francisco FBI spokesperson Julianne Sohn said.
Labboun was arrested along with two known Hezbollah members in Merida, the capital city of Mexico’s Yucatan state.
|Rafic Rafic Labboun "Allaboun" of|
Shia Association of Bay Area
(Saba Islamic Center of San Jose, CA)
This summer, Labboun was released from federal prison, where he served 27 months for credit card fraud. Authorities said several companies were defrauded of a combined US $100,000. At the time, authorities thought the fraud was linked to a money laundering operation for Hezbollah in the United States.
The government was unable to prove at the time that he was an operative for the terrorist organization.
Court records show Labboun was born in Beirut and immigrated to the United States in 1986. He holds dual U.S. and Lebanese citizenship.
This story was first published by CBS San Francisco.