Man accused of threatening to blow up mosque in south Florida

PEMBROKE PINES, Fla. (WSVN) – A man is facing a serious federal charge after, authorities said, he made explosive threats to a South Florida mosque.

According to the Department of Justice, 26-year-old Dustin Allen Hughes left a series of profanity-laced voicemails in which he threatened to blow up the Jamaat UI Muttaqeen Mosque in Pembroke Pines.

Investigators said Hughes left a threatening voicemail on the mosque’s answering machine, May 5.

In one of the messages, he is heard saying, “I planted a bomb in your temple. I’m gonna blow your [expletive] temple up, because you guys are a bunch of [expletive] lying, murdering pieces of hypocrite [expletive] that just want to cause mayhem to Americans … I have a bomb strapped in there right now.”

In another voicemail, Hughes details his plan of attack. “I have the [expletive] bomb detonate in there right now, and I’m gonna set it off!”

At one point he is heard saying, “You guys are all gonna be up in flames after I’m done with you!”

Within three days, officials said, Hughes left three other voicemails on the mosque’s non-emergency line.

“This is somebody calling on multiple days, on multiple occasions, on multiple phones of this Islamic center, threatening to blow this place,” said Wilfredo Ruiz of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, “threatening to kill people, to endanger our families, endanger not just the structure.”

After hearing the voicemails, mosque leaders immediately called Pembroke Pines Police. Investigators quickly traced the calls back to Hughes and tracked him down.

He was arrested Tuesday at his Miami-Dade residence.

Federal officials said Hughes admitted to leaving the explicit messages. When told his threats caused members of the mosque to be scared, police said he began clapping and said, “Good.”

No bomb was found at the mosque.

Since the disturbing messages, the mosque has hired security. 7News cameras captured worshippers’ vehicles parking on the premises Wednesday night.

The members of this mosque said they want to send a strong warning to anyone who threatens their community and their house of worship. “If you threaten our community, if you threaten our Islamic centers, we will report it to the local police, we will report it to the federal authorities,” said Ruiz. “You will be arrested.”

Hughes has been charged by criminal complaint with willfully making a bomb threat by telephone, a felony charge. He could face up to 10 years in prison.

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