February 28, 2014
The FBI had a mole inside al Qaeda who met with Osama bin Laden eight years prior to 9/11 and knew he planned to finance terror attacks, but the bureau declined to tell Congressional investigators or the 9/11 Commission about the mole, sources involved in the case told NBC News.
The mole, NBC News has learned exclusively, was a Los Angeles-based “driver and confidante” of the “Blind Sheikh,” Omar Abdel-Rahman, now in prison for his role in planning the original 1993 terror attack on New York’s World Trade Center. Information from the mole helped stop a bin Laden-backed plot against a Masonic Lodge in L.A. in the mid-‘90s, according to courtroom testimony by Ed Curran, who was the assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s L.A. office at the time.
“It was the only source I know in the bureau where we had a source right in al Qaeda, directly involved,” Curran told the court, according to excerpts of testimony published by the Washington Times. He also testified that the informant was “tight, close” with al Qaeda leadership.