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Emily Welker, Published August 27 2013

Man charged with threatening Fargo synagogue

FARGO – A man is facing federal civil rights and threats charges after officials at the Department of Justice said he called the synagogue here and left a message suggesting he was affiliated with Hamas and claiming Islamic Jihad against the head of the synagogue.

Dominique Jason Flanigan, 41, of Fargo, also known as Kadafi Al Sadar, was arraigned Monday on two counts of transmitting threatening communications and one count of interference with a federally protected activity, the highest count of which is a felony, according to court documents.

Flanigan was arrested and is being held in the Cass County jail.

A grand jury indicted Flanigan on Dec. 12 for leaving a voicemail message at the synagogue in Fargo that allegedly threatened its employees because of their religion, according to a news release from acting assistant attorney general for the Civil Rights Division Jocelyn Samuels and Timothy Purdon, U.S. attorney for North Dakota.

The recently unsealed indictment alleges Flanigan called Temple Beth El on Jan. 4, 2011, and said, “Yeah, I want to send a special message to the head of this synagogue. When I come back to Fargo, I’ll make sure you my number one list to come visit. I got a special package from Gaza I want to deliver to you from Hamas (profanity.) See about it (profanity), Islamic Jihad online.”

The indictment says that Flanigan was calling from Florida.

Samuels and Purdon said that the case is being investigated by the FBI. No attorney of record is listed in court records for Flanigan in the federal case.

It’s not the first time that Flanigan has been accused of a religion-related crime.

Court records show he pleaded guilty Aug. 5 to a Class A misdemeanor charge of reckless endangerment in Cass County District Court after being accused of throwing a Quran through an apartment window in August of last year. Court documents say the holy book and glass from the window landed in the crib of a sleeping 6-month-old baby.

He also pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor criminal mischief charge and was sentenced to 10 months and 19 days in jail.

Temple Beth El officials did not return a voicemail left at the synagogue in time for this story.

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Emily Welker at (701) 241-5541