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Former Boston-area man put on FBI’s Most Wanted list

Ahmad Abousamra.Reuters File

A former Boston-area man who is accused of conspiring with convicted terror plotter Tarek Mehanna has been added to the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list, the federal agency’s terrorism-related version of its most-wanted criminal list.

Ahmad Abousamra, who may be living in Aleppo, Syria, with his family, is facing federal indictments in Boston from 2009 on charges that include conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists, providing and attempting to provide material support to terrorists, and conspiracy to kill in a foreign country.

A reward of up to $50,000 is being offered for information leading to his arrest.

In a podcast released by the FBI, Lowell police Sergeant Thomas Daly said that Abousamra “has shown that he wants to kill United States soldiers’’ and that he has made at least three trips overseas, seeking terrorist training so he could fight American forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.


Daly, who is assigned to the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, said Abousamra has a “high-pitched voice that would distinguish him from others.’’

Vincent S. Lisi, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Boston Division, said in statement that “we believe the international exposure the Most Wanted Terrorists List provides will assist the FBI in Abousamra’s apprehension and his return to the United States to face justice.”

Abousamra and Mehanna were childhood friends who allegedly traveled together to Yemen in 2004 in a bid to join a terrorist training camp.

But they could not find one that would take them, the Globe reported in 2009.

The Globe reported that Abousamra grew up in Stoughton and that he attended Xaverian Brothers High School in Westwood for three years before graduating from Stoughton High School in 1999. He also attended Northeastern University.

While Abousamra has been able to elude authorities, Mehanna, who spent much of his youth in Sudbury, was charged and convicted in December 2011 in US District Court in Boston on charges of terror plotting and providing assistance to terror organizations.


Mehanna is currently serving a 17½-year federal prison sentence.

The FBI announced the reward for Abousamra last year, but it has now intensified its focus on him by adding him to the most-wanted terrorist list, which has 30 people on it.

Abousamra, 32, is of Syrian descent and has dual citizenship in the United States and Syria. He is 5 feet 11 inches tall and has brown eyes. At the time he fled, he weighed approximately 170 pounds and had a slim build and dark brown hair. He speaks, reads, and writes fluently in English and Arabic.

He has a number of known aliases, including: Ahmad Abou-Samra, Ahmad Abou, Ahmad Abou Samira, Ahmad Samra, Ahmad Abu Samra, and Ahmad Abou Samra.

The FBI said he should be considered armed and dangerous.

John R. Ellement can be reached at ellement@globe .com. Follow him on Twitter @JREbosglobe.