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Saturday, August 26, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: Wasserman Schultz’ ‘Islamophobia’ Claim Prompts Angered Marine To Go Public On Awans
The following article appeared
on the Daily Caller on August 24th
By Luke Rosiak
A Marine who provided key evidence in
the FBI case against Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s former IT
employee said he is appalled by her claim that Islamophobia led U.S.
Capitol Police to frame the former staffer.
Also Wednesday, two of Imran Awan’s
relatives went on the record to say they think he would do anything for money.
Andre Taggart alerted the FBI to
damaged hard drives and a cache of electronics tied to Imran Awan, a former IT
specialist for dozens of House Democrats. Awan is the central figure in a
criminal investigation of suspected procurement fraud and violations of the
congressional IT network, including diverting data to an off-site server.
Taggart told The Daily Caller News
Foundation’s Investigative Group Wednesday that “it was amazing” that Wasserman
Schultz, a Florida Democrat, describes Imran as a victim of religious discrimination
by law enforcement. Taggart rented the Northern Virginia home of Awan, who had
frantically moved out after learning authorities were onto him.
“It pisses me off,” said Taggart, a
black Marine who says he votes Democrat. He believes Wasserman Schultz is
crying wolf and devaluing the meaning of genuine discrimination, while also
exposing herself and the nation to risks.
Top of Form
Wasserman Schultz claimed Imran Awan
is being “persecuted” by the Capitol Police
and FBI after she was told that he is suspected of “data transfer violations,”
even as she lamented the seriousness of the hacking of the Democratic National
Committee. Wasserman Schultz was chairwoman of the Democratic National
Committee when its IT network was hacked in 2016.
“I just want to get these [guys]
locked up and exposed and now,” Taggart told TheDCNF. “The people who
facilitated them should also be locked up, as far as I’m concerned.”
Taggart said he made the decision to
no longer be anonymous because he is concerned that his fellow Democrats are
making a grave mistake by ignoring a scandal with serious criminal and national
“I’m absolutely disgusted with
everything going on in the country right now, mostly because of right-wing
conservatives, but with respect to this situation, political affiliation is
irrelevant,” Taggart said.
Imran Awan and his wife, Hina Alvi, were indicted Aug. 17, 2017, on four
charges related to sending money to Pakistan fraudulently in an apparent
attempt to escape from a broader, ongoing investigation into cybersecurity and
Awan and Facilitator
“Him, his wife, his brother, all
working down there — there’s no way they could do this without help. If we can
drag Trump and his wingnuts through the mud for the Russia influence that they
are having, then it’s only fair that we also expose this s–t,” Taggart said.
After Imran Awan realized the hard
drives and electronics had been left in the house he rented to Taggart, Awan
threatened to sue him to get the equipment back. Awan also listed the house for
sale shortly after signing a multi-year lease with Taggart, the latter said.
“They took advantage of us,” Taggart
said, describing a series of financially aggressive and dishonest interactions
he said he had with Imran.
Taggart said he believes the Awans
would “do anything for money,” the same term others, including relatives, have
used in describing the couple.
Wasserman Schultz has rejected
concerns about Imran as “absurd” and “laughable,” even though he had access to
all of her congressional emails and files, as well as her iPad password, is
suspected by police of cybersecurity violations, and had long been accused of defrauding
people for financial gain.
Also on Wednesday, an Awan relative,
Syed Ahmed, told The Daily Mail that “for the
sake of money they would have done anything… [Imran] might have been selling
Evidence suggests that the Awans were
running a ghost employee scheme, collecting $6 million in salaries from
taxpayers even though only a few of the six people on the House payroll
actually performed IT work. Congressional offices signed off on those
time-sheets for unknown reasons.
Imran Awan’s brother Abid operated a
Virginia car dealership while being paid $160,000 annually working for multiple
House Democrats. The dealership received $100,000 from an Iranian fugitive linked to Hezbollah, according to court records.
Amjad Khan, a former business
partner, told the Daily Mail that “[Abid] would just go in [to the Hill] a
couple times a week for a couple of hours, just to show his face. On paper, I
think [Abid and Imran] were both working, but in reality only one was working,
the other was running the [car] business.”
Khan added that “when he would go to
D.C., [Abid] would spend $3,000 or $4,000 a night.”
Practicing the 'Hands Up' Position
Abid worked for New York Democratic
Rep. Yvette Clarke during a time when $120,000 in IT equipment went missing from that office. Clarke’s chief of staff signed a form ensuring the
missing equipment wouldn’t become a problem with congressional auditors.
Clarke’s office did not tell police at the time the form was signed, and Abid
remained employed for six more months.
Clarke and her staff repeatedly
refused to explain, even though the money would have been enough to hire four
staffers to provide services for her Brooklyn constituents.
Clarke fired Abid in September 2016
after House administrators told her they were auditing all finances connected
to the Awans. Four months later, Capitol Police banned the brothers from
the congressional IT network.