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Source of shoe bomber’s cash unclear

December 22, 2014

Today is the thirteenth anniversary of failed shoe bomber Richard Reid’s attempt to blow up a trans-Atlantic flight. Reid purchased his plane ticket with $1,800 in cash. He is also said to have purchased the explosive materials in Amsterdam with $1,500 in cash. Reid also bought the high-top basketball shoes he used on the flight with cash.  He flew to Israel before flying to the U.S. as a test run with no public accounting of how that travel was funded.

As one website put it, “Perhaps someone can explain exactly how this part-time dishwasher came to have enough spare cash to travel to Israel on El Al airlines without a passport for ten days in July, then even more spare cash to buy an expensive airline ticket from Paris to Miami aboard American Airlines Flight 63?”

Somehow, Reid also had money during his initial incarceration to pay for a subscription to Time magazine.

Perhaps Reid had received bank wires from Al Qaeda interlocutors overseas to finance his travels, or cash handouts domestically in Britain from like-minded parishioners at the Finsbury Park Mosque in London—a hotbed of Islamist activity where Reid worshiped.

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