Terrorist Dry Run at Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Complex in Southern California? Three Middle Eastern Men Try to Drive on Base | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
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Terrorism

Terrorist Dry Run at Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Complex in Southern California? Three Middle Eastern Men Try to Drive on Base

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Fri, Apr 1, 2011 at 12:15 PM

click to enlarge Ahmad Rahmani Naeem, Vahik Petrossian and Sengekdi Avanosian. - THE DAILY MAIL
  • The Daily Mail
  • Ahmad Rahmani Naeem, Vahik Petrossian and Sengekdi Avanosian.
A scary situation unfolded at Southern California's Camp Pendleton, one of the nation's largest military bases, over the weekend.

Marine Corps officials are downplaying the events, but what happened at the San Diego County complex had some speculating that possible terror suspects could have been casing the joint.

Three men of Middle Eastern descent tried to drive onto the base. One returned more than eight hours later and apparently tried it again. One of the vehicles involved had wires hanging from its steering-wheel airbag panel.

After the incident the base issued a be-on-the-lookout (BOLO) alert to local law enforcement that was inadvertently leaked to the public. Now base officials are downplaying the events:

click to enlarge The front, Oceanside gate at Camp Pendleton in San Diego County.
  • The front, Oceanside gate at Camp Pendleton in San Diego County.

"Basically the bottom line is that Camp Pendleton is not further investigating any of the events," a base official told the Weekly today.

Asked if Camp Pendleton was on heightened alert, he said, "We don't discuss force protection measures."

In fact, if it weren't for the BOLO's inadvertent release to the public, we might never have known about the incident.

Here's what happened about midnight Saturday at the Oceanside-adjacent base, according to the U.K.'s Daily Mail:

Ahmad Rahmani Naeem, a 40-year-old Afghani, drove a rented Toyota to the main gate and, as his car was being searched, Vahik Petrossian, 41, and Sengekdi Norvik Avanosian, 27, tried to drive onto the base in separate cars. Those two are from Iran.

Instead of waiting, as told, those two drove onto the base and a short pursuit ensued.

After the three were checked out they were released, but, strangely, Naeem showed up again at 8:30 the next morning, saying he was lost.

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