Open Todashev Letter to President Obama

January 2, 2014 by  


Abdulbaki Todashev, representing the interests of his son – Ibragim Todashev

Dear Mr. President,

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Abdulbaki Todashev

I am writing to you being dictated by the call of my soul and the unalleviated pain of a father whose son was ruthlessly killed. I am not asking you to share my pain but I am asking you, as the head of the great country – the guarantor of democracy in the modern world, to help the law and justice prevail. I will try to be short and concise.

My son was born in 1985 in a family with other 11 children. All my life I worked hard, trying to provide for my family and bring up dignified and law-abiding children.

In 2008 Ibragim, being a fifth year student at the Chechen State University, was enrolled in an international student exchange program and went to the United States to practice his English. In Boston he studied English in depth and got engaged in big sports – Mixed Martial Arts. In 2011 he moved to Orlando, Florida. All these years, alongside with his studies and sports, he worked to earn his living and sometimes received financial support from his family back home.

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We, Ibragim’s parents, were aware of everything that was happening in his life in America, including his friends, girlfriends and trainers, as he was regularly in contact not only with his father, mother, sisters and brothers, but also with his other relatives and friends.

After the terrorist attack in Boston FBI interrogated my son several times because he was acquainted with Tsarnayev brothers – suspects of the terrorist attack. He got acquainted with them because they trained in the same gym when he lived in Boston. When Boston events took place my son had already lived at 6022 Peregrine Ave., Orlando, Florida 32819, USA. He had received a green card and was preparing to visit his family in Russia. Having had a knee operation he was waiting for his leg to heal to be able to walk independently. He had bought presents for his relatives and tickets for a flight that was supposed to take place on May 24. However, on May 22 he was visited by FBI agents who ruthlessly cut short his life.

Large amount of factual evidences proves that he neither had anything to do with the terrorist attack nor with any other crimes, which FBI wanted to hang on him. We, as Chechens, know very well what terrorism is and how many innocent lives have been taken by it during the first and the second Chechen campaigns. Chechens have always condemned terrorist attacks wherever they have taken place and whatever goals have been pursued by their executors. Neither bad nor good intentions justify terrorism.

Let’s assume that my son was suspected in participating in a crime. FBI agents four times interrogated him in their office. Please, note that the interrogations took place in their office and Ibragim regularly visited them when they called him and provided detailed answers to all their questions. He was neither arrested nor was he detained. Then he told me that he did not want to go to the FBI office anymore because the agents put pressure on him. The fifth time FBI agents came to his place. They asked his friend Khusein Taramov, who was at that time with Ibragim, to leave the apartment. After that Ibragim was tortured and later shot multiple times in the body and in the head to guarantee his death. Ibragim’s body and his head had 13 (thirteen) gunshot wounds. I also should mention that I have not misspoken about tortures. His face and body had bruises sustained while he was still alive.

There are many questions that arise from the above mentioned facts. I will list the most salient ones:

1. Why the group of FBI agents after four interrogations in their office, came to Ibragim’s house for the fifth interrogation? After all what happened to Ibragim I am inclined to think that they came to kill him. It seems that killing him in their office would create significant challenges for them.

2. There was an article in the media that said that an allegedly anonymous FBI agent shared that Ibragim attacked them and they used fire arms in order to defend themselves.

Let’s assume that this is true and Ibragim, having become Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris and Arnold Schwarzenegger, all in one, literally threw around and battered the entire group of specially trained and well-armed agents. These are fairy tales for the mentally infirm, because shortly before this incident my son had undergone a serious operation on his knee at GAVETTA Orthopedic Clinics on 03.13.2013 (diagnosis: anterior cross-shaped ligament and meniscal tears) and used crutches. His weight at that time was 72 kilograms while height was 175 centimeters (photography of the operated knee is enclosed).

3. What kind of actions could my son do to endanger the lives of FBI agents while he was literally in their hands and how these agents could allow any danger to arise to kill him so ruthlessly in his apartment? This is absurd. It is clear and obvious. This means that these FBI agents were incompetent if they allowed this to happen. My son was absolutely unarmed.

That means he was provoked. Unlawful acts were committed against him; unacceptable methods were used on him. They must have needed it; they wanted to provoke him, and any healthy person could be provoked after hours-long interrogations.

Even if the FBI agents were right, why would they shoot at him so many times instead of immobilizing him by shooting in his shoulder or leg, etc.? Doesn’t FBI have other special means that can neutralize anyone, such as tasers, batoons and so on?

I would like to emphasize once again that all this was happening inside my son’s home and not while he was being chased on the street or someplace else in the course of an arrest, or resisting authority, or during the commission of a crime.

4. The medical examiner’s report concerning my son’s body has not yet been released to my legal attorneys, despite the fact that they requested it several times. The medical examiner’s office claimed the FBI banned the report’s release. I can’t help but think that an independent medical examination is unlikely if the examiners obey the FBI’s orders.

5. Why does FBI subject Ibragim’s friends and acquaintances to pressure and blackmail by threatening arrests and deportations?. Having refused to work for FBI Ibragim’s friends, Tatiana Gruzdeva and Ashurmamad Miraliev, were deported from the United States. Many others have been forced to leave the country under FBI’s pressure.

6. Why does FBI pressure not only all Ibragim’s acquaintances, but now also my acquaintances, who helped me during my first visit to the United States when I picked up my slain sons’s body, as well as my second visit, when I was trying to learn from Ibragim’s acquaintances and friends about the circumstances surrounding his death?

7. FBI does everything to prevent this case from hearings in court and, if hearings take place, to ensure that none of the witnesses can provide positive feedback about my son.

8. When I came to the United States for the second time I lived in Ibragim’s apartment. I slept on his bed, ate in the same cafes where he did, visited the gym where he trained, went to the mosque where he prayed, always was with his friends and talked to his acquaintances and neighbors. In other words I was in his shoes. Believe me it is extremely difficult to recall these events again and again. I wouldn’t wish this even to my fiercest enemy. For the entire time of my own investigation I haven’t heard anything bad about my son.

Dear Mr. President,

Unfortunately I am not an expert in the U. S. criminal legislation but in my country actions of these FBI agents are classified as an abuse of power and a premeditated murder. I believe that the FBI agents not only damaged reputation of their agency but also of the entire country in the eyes of the international community.

It seems that FBI in the United States is everything. President is nothing for them. They are judges and prosecutors. There is no authority above them. FBI can kill anyone wherever and whenever they want. If FBI suspects something they first kill and then start looking for scapegoats, trying to connect something that cannot be connected, such as Japanese Tsunami with American Tornado. They think up legends to justify what they have committed and file away a person, just like a sheep on a farm.

Because of actions of such FBI agents and other similar people in power for the last several years the democracy, former glory, image, and the reputation of the United States have been seriously questioned. According to available statistics, for the last several years law enforcement agencies (police, FBI, etc.) have killed 70 and injured 80 people. In none of the cases have the men in uniform been convicted.

Don’t you think that it is time to put an end to this practice and stop this lawlessness, turn your face to the people who voted for you hoping for positive changes?

Far from lecturing you, I am simply sharing my thoughts caused by the grief that came upon my family and as a man whose heart has been ripped out and, in addition, is being trodden to pieces.

The murder of my son is an unprecedented case.

Believe me, Mr. President, that after such an unprecedented, cold-blooded, ruthless and premeditated murder of my son there is no justification for them. Everything is as clear as black and white. Having gotten rid of the witness and not allowing my son to have a legal representative they killed him in an extra-judicial manner.

Did my son know that he had the right to remain silent or did he have rights at all, including the right to live? Being a citizen of another country he might not be aware of the laws as he was only 27 years old and wanted to live so much. No, they left no chances for him inflicting 13 gunshot wounds and multiple hematomas on his body. After what FBI agents have done to him whatever excuses they come up with nobody would believe them because my son is dead and cannot talk for himself. They did it deliberately so that he can never speak and never take part in court hearings. They put pressure on my son’s friends to prevent them from coming to the court and speaking the truth.

I rely on you, Mr. President, and hope that the prosecutor’s office and the court do not let the agencies conducting internal investigation on this case prevent the truth from coming to light so that at least some part of our grief, caused by the murder of our son, is relieved, and that the murderers stand trial instead of sit in their desk chairs.

Dear Mr. President, in addition to all what I have mentioned above, I enclose factual evidences.

If you have time to listen to me and give me your consent to meet you I can come to the United States and provide detailed explanations using factual evidences.

Dear Mr. President, I hope that you, as a guarantor of the U. S. Constitution, pay attention to my letter and those who are guilty in the murder of my son will be justly punished.

With respect and hope,

Father of a murdered son Abdulbaki Todashev

Attachment: 13 (thirteen) photos of the body of my son and his apartment where the murder took place.

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