A judge has freed the men accused of duping Secret Service agents by posing as federal agents and providing them with gifts The Wall Street Journal reports.
The Journal went on to report:
“There are significantly worse and more dangerous law-enforcement impersonation cases than what the government has proffered here,” Magistrate Judge G. Michael Harvey said in an hourlong ruling Tuesday from the bench in the last of a series of detention hearings over the course of three days.
Prosecutors said the men, Haider Ali and Arian Taherzadeh, posed as Department of Homeland Security employees and gave gifts including rent-free apartments and a drone to Secret Service agents. Prosecutors charged them with impersonating federal officers and argued they were dangerous and would likely flee the country, accusations Judge Harvey said he doubted.
The judge said prosecutors had not shown the men acted on behalf of foreign governments or sought to bribe or extort Secret Service agents, and that no national security information had been compromised.
“Nevertheless, I still find that the government has sufficient evidence here to convict both the defendants of the crimes they have been charged with,” Judge Harvey said, agreeing not to release the men until Wednesday morning to give prosecutors time to decide whether to appeal. Under the judge’s order they will be subject to supervision, including GPS monitoring, and must stay away from airports and the apartment in southeastern Washington where they were arrested.
Prosecutors allege that the men tried to ship weapons to a Secret Service agent assigned to the White House in an attempt to conceal evidence.
It has been reported that the men had ties to Pakistan intelligence services and other governments throughout the region.
It remains unclear what information they were able to gather from the Secret Service agents.
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