FBI seeks info on suspected Hezbollah Burgas bombers

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The FBI is seeking information on two men suspected of helping Hezbollah kill five Israelis and a Bulgarian in a bus bombing in Bulgaria last year.

On Thursday, the FBI released a statement seeking information on Hassan El Hajj Hassan and Meliad Farah, who are wanted for questioning in connection with the suicide attack on July 19, 2012, outside Burgas airport.


The FBI was “assisting Bulgaria’s Interior Ministry in its investigation” of the bombing, the statement said.

In February, Bulgaria blamed the military wing of the Shi’ite group of perpetrating the attack. The Bulgarian investigation helped lead to last month’s European Union blacklisting of Hezbollah’s military wing.

The FBI also said in the statement that it suspected El Hajj Hassan and Farah of using fake Michigan driver’s licenses bearing the names Ralph William Rico and Brian Jeremiah Jameson, respectively. Another Michigan driver’s license “bearing the name Jacque Felipe Martin was found at the scene of the bombing and is thought to be associated with the bomber who carried out this attack,“ the statement read.

“Between June 28, 2012, and July 18, 2012, Hajj Hassan and Farah were reportedly in the regions of Ruse, Varna, Nesebar, the ‘Sunny Beach’ resort area and the village of Ravda, all of which are near Burgas, Bulgaria,” said the release. “It is believed both Hajj Hassan and Farah checked into hotels using their false identification. Farah also may have used the identification bearing the name Brian Jameson to rent a car in Varna, Bulgaria, in July 2012.”

The FBI said that it was investigating the creation and procurement of the fraudulent driver’s licenses and Social Security card.

Hassan El Hajj Hassan has dual Lebanese and Canadian citizenship, according to the FBI. Farah has used the alias Hussein Hussein and has dual Lebanese and Australian citizenship.