William Branigin and Del Quentin Wilber
February 17, 2012
… In a cryptic news release, the Capitol Police said the person was arrested “in the area of the U.S. Capitol” but that “at no time was the public or congressional community in any danger.”
The statement said the arrest “was the culmination of a lengthy and extensive operation during which the individual was closely and carefully monitored.”
The statement provided no other details, but a U.S. official said a Moroccan man in his 30s was picked up near the Labor Department on his way to the Capitol for what he thought would be a suicide attack. He was carrying with him a vest that he believed was packed with explosives but that actually contained harmless material, officials said.
The man thought he was being assisted by members of the al-Qaeda terrorist network, but they were really undercover FBI agents, officials said.