Reader Lynne S. flags breaking news about the Goose Creek Two:
Two University of South Florida students who are facing federal explosives charges after an arrest a month ago will be returned to Tampa, attorneys said after a sudden hearing today in federal court.
Attorneys for both men say their clients, Youssef Megahed and Ahmed Mohamed, are pleased to be returning to Tampa, where they were living while attending USF. “They’ll be happy to get back,” said Lionel Lofton, attorney for Mohamed.
Neither Lofton nor Andy Savage, attorney for Megahed, knew when the men might be returned in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service. However, in court Thursday, instead of the usual jailhouse uniforms, both men were wearing street clothes. Mohamed was wearing the clothes he was arrested in, Lofton said, a knee-length bathing suit and a dirty T-shirt. Megahed was wearing clothes that his attorney, Savage, said did not appear to be his and were mismatched.
The initial appearance hearing took about five minutes. Defense attorneys “waived identity,” the only legal issue scheduled to be presented today. That means both defense attorneys agree that their clients are the people named in the indictment and it sets in motion the process to bring the two to Tampa.
The next court proceeding for the men likely will be a detention hearing that has been requested by the government, which wants to hold the men without bail. It will take place in Tampa, the attorneys said, but no time or date was set. The timeframe is dependent on when the men are transported by the U.S. Marshal’s Service. For security reasons, they have not told the defense attorneys how or when they will be taken.
Curiouser and curiouser.
Dan Riehl notes a new detail not previously reported. The suspects had ammo:
Bullets were among the items investigators found in the car of two University of South Florida students.
The deputy who pulled over Ahmed Abdellatif Sherif Mohamed and Youssef Samir Megahed, 21, found a box of bullets near the seat, several pipe bombs in the trunk and “other suspicious items,” according to the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office.
From fireworks to no fireworks, from no terror to terror charges, and now a box of bullets. The St. Pete Times opines: “The new information only deepened the mystery of why the two engineering students ended up on Aug. 4 in Goose Creek, S.C., a suburban city near Charleston.”
One last item of note: As I blogged earlier, Egyptian officials did meet with the family. They are denying the IPT’s report that one of the suspects had a past criminal history.