The Paper. has learned that another man has been charged with a Federal crime related to the murders of Muslim men in Albuquerque.
The Albuquerque Police Department released the criminal complaint that charged 51-year-old Muhammad Atif Syed his morning. Now, Syed’s son Shaheen Syed is facing criminal charges in Federal court related to the purchase of firearms.
A US Attorney’s Office Spokesperson said that Shaheen Syed made his first appearance in Federal court this morning on charges of providing false information during the purchase of a firearm.
According to federal court documents, Shaheen Syed, who changed his name from Maiwand, listed an address in Hallandale Beach, Florida, when he purchased two different weapons from Omni Arms: an AR-15, and an AK47.
Shaheen Syed purchased both of the weapons in July 2021 and was living in Albuquerque at the time.
After appearing in Federal court he was remanded to custody until a later date.
Timeline of Murders
In a display of partnership on the local and federal level, along with a lot of tips and help from the community at large, police compiled a chilling timeline of events from the murders.
According to a criminal complaint filed by the Albuquerque Police Department charging Syed, various gun shops throughout the city provided the war-style weapons that left two men dead in the streets.
Aftab Hussein, was murdered July 26, after he was shot multiple times with an AK-47. Detectives found multiple shell casings at the scene that were later found to match the same AK47 rifle that Syed owned.
The second murder victim, Muhammud Afzaal Hussein, was shot to death August 1 but this crime scene differed from the first in that two separate weapons were used to kill him.
Do police believe Syed stopped, and switched from a 9mm handgun to an AK47 (or vice versa) to continue shooting Hussein’s body? Or do police believe that a second person helped to kill Hussein?
APD Public Information Officer Gilbert Gallegos didn’t respond to questions about the possibility of a second shooter before publication.
Yesterday, APD detectives questioned the accused’s son, Shaheen “Maiwand” Syed, but they had not yet named him as a suspect or charged him in connection with the crimes.
“I asked Shaheen if he was in Muhammad’s gray Volkswagen when Muhammad Zaher Ahmadi, Aftab Hussain, Muhammad Afzal Hussain, or Naeem Hussain were shot and killed,” APD Detective L. Wise wrote in the criminal complaint. “Shaheen stated he know (sic) about the shooting and that he did not shoot the victims in this case.”
Syed himself also spoke with police with the help of a Pashto interpreter. Syed said he purchased the AK47 because he was familiar with the platform from his time in Afghanistan, fighting against the Taliban.
Police were watching as Syed left his home in Albuquerque near midnight on August 8; he was arrested in Santa Rosa just after midnight. He told police he was on his way to Houston, to find a safer place for his family to live because of all the recent murders in the Muslim community.
“Muhammad took with him; clothing, shoes, and a pistol or handgun,” Det. Wise wrote.
Two AK47s were found in Syed’s home, one in his bedroom, and the other in Shaheen’s bedroom. Police also found numerous bullet casings in the Volkswagen Jetta that Syed owned. A 9mm handgun was found in Syed’s car after he was arrested in Santa Rosa.
Syed told police he knew two of the victims, or had seen them at parties or community events in the city. But the motive for the killings remains unclear.