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Oregon Authorities Praise Arrest of Accused Environmental Terrorist

The US Attorney's Office says that domestic terrorism suspect Joseph Dibee has been on the run for 12 years.

Posted: Aug 10, 2018 2:32 PM

PORTLAND, Ore. — After 12 years on the run, authorities say that accused domestic terrorist Joseph Mahmoud Dibee has been arrested abroad and will be extradited to the US to face charges in multiple states, including Oregon.

Now 50 years old, Seattle-native Joseph Dibee allegedly participated in an environmentally-motivated terrorist group with ties to the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) or the Animal Liberation Front (ALF). Dibee is suspected in crimes that took place in Oregon, California and Washington state.

“More than two decades ago, a loosely affiliated group of environmental extremists set out to express their views using force, violence, sabotage, mass destruction, intimidation, and coercion,” said U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams. “Thankfully no innocent lives were taken by these senseless acts...Dibee will now, as many of his co-conspirators have before, face the consequences of his actions. Using violent means to express one’s views will never be tolerated nor forgotten. We will bring every last person responsible for these crimes to justice.”

An American citizen, Dibbee is charged in the District of Oregon with one count of conspiracy to commit arson, one count of conspiracy to commit arson and destruction of an energy facility, and one count of arson. He also faces one count each of conspiracy to commit arson, possession of an unregistered firearm, and possession of a destructive device in furtherance of a crime of violence in the Western District of Washington and one count each of conspiracy to commit arson, arson of a government building, and possession of a destructive device in furtherance of a crime of violence in the Eastern District of California.

The US Attorney's Office says that Dibee will make an initial appearance in federal court on Friday before a federal magistrate judge in the District of Oregon. The government will seek his continued detention.

According to court documents, federal authorities learned Dibee was traveling through Central America on his way to Russia with a planned stop in Cuba. With the assistance of the Cuban authorities, the FBI arranged for Dibee's detention before he boarded a plane bound for Russia—with the intent of returning him to the US to stand trial. Dibee fled the United States in December 2005.

In 2006, a federal grand jury in Oregon indicted Dibee and 11 co-conspirators as part of "Operation BACKFIRE"—a long-running FBI domestic terrorism investigation. The US Attorney's Office claims that the conspirators, known as “The Family,” have been linked to more than 40 criminal acts ranging from vandalism to arson between 1995 and 2001, causing more than $45 million in damages.

Authorities are still looking for one fugitive from Operation BACKFIRE—Josephine Sunshine Overaker, an American citizen believed to be either 43 or 46 years old, fled to Europe in late 2001. Overaker faces 19 felony charges. The US Attorney's Office says that Overaker speaks fluent Spanish and may seek employment as a firefighter, midwife, sheep tender, or masseuse. The FBI continues to offer a reward of up to $50,000 for information leading to her arrest.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 154554

Reported Deaths: 2204
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah31785528
Washington21060212
Marion18335285
Clackamas13310175
Lane10172126
Jackson8299111
Umatilla763181
Deschutes591859
Yamhill375964
Linn356556
Malheur334358
Polk302942
Klamath277455
Douglas242853
Benton231816
Josephine231649
Jefferson195028
Coos142519
Union127519
Columbia124321
Wasco122026
Lincoln112820
Hood River106329
Morrow104414
Clatsop7756
Crook77518
Baker6487
Curry4166
Tillamook4122
Lake3746
Harney2726
Grant2221
Wallowa1424
Gilliam531
Sherman530
Wheeler221
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3554629

Reported Deaths: 51395
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles118754221106
Riverside2891853749
San Bernardino2853342673
Orange2603483889
San Diego2589823260
Santa Clara1098411765
Kern102627811
Fresno947941412
Sacramento929441464
Alameda800881224
Ventura77238834
San Joaquin665691082
Contra Costa62164674
Stanislaus55775944
Tulare47784746
Monterey42138327
San Mateo38763515
San Francisco34061398
Santa Barbara31763407
Solano29968164
Merced28915395
Sonoma27954298
Imperial26843589
Kings21951218
Placer19713231
San Luis Obispo19612227
Madera15390209
Santa Cruz14588183
Marin13136197
Yolo12760185
Shasta10944174
Butte10915160
El Dorado9095100
Napa897668
Sutter884597
San Benito574359
Yuba573336
Lassen560119
Tehama508152
Tuolumne394659
Nevada393274
Mendocino379643
Amador344441
Humboldt316033
Lake313440
Glenn221023
Colusa212813
Calaveras190547
Siskiyou174014
Inyo128736
Mono12114
Del Norte9875
Plumas6536
Modoc4524
Mariposa3947
Trinity3675
Sierra990
Alpine810
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