Less than two weeks after a Saudi military student shot up a classroom at Pensacola Naval Air Station in Florida, killing three and wounding eight, another Saudi Arabian national has been detained on a federal firearms charge at a U.S. university.
Hassan Alqahtani, 27, arrested a day before he was scheduled to graduate from the University of New Mexico, allegedly had a memorized “kill list” which included a professor, Mailonline reported.
The FBI’s National Threat Operations Center got a tip in August that the engineering student was keeping the list, which included a former roommate and a person he had scuffled with. The latter was the person who filed a complaint.
His attorneys hope to downplay allegations that their client possessed a gun and a list of people he wanted dead.
At a hearing Monday in U.S. District Court, Special Agent Jonathan Labuhn acknowledged that the tipster never saw a written list of targets. “It was more of a mental list Alqahtani kept of people who had slighted him,” Labuhn told prosecutors.
Alqahtani is charged with illegal possession of a firearm as a student visa holder after authorities found a gun at his Albuquerque home after serving a search warrant. His parents, wife and other relatives were all in town for Alqahtani’s graduation on Saturday.
Instead he was arrested Friday and spent the weekend in custody. Hearings will resume Tuesday, and it will be up to a U.S. magistrate judge to determine whether he should be released pending trial.