KANSAS CITY, MO - Members of the metro area's auto parts industry are angry after revelations that a
KANSAS CITY, MO - Members of the metro area's auto parts industry are angry after revelations that a Kansas City, Missouri, auto dealer used his business to funnel cash to the Al-Qaida terrorist network.
Khalid Ouazzani, 32, admitted to providing $23,000 to Al-Qaida in federal court on Wednesday. Ouazzani owned an auto parts business in Kansas City near I-435 and Truman Road. That building is now under new ownership.
Those who did business with Ouazzani in the auto parts industry say he never said anything bad about the United States, or about doing business here. One woman who owns a metro used auto parts operation that did business with Ouazzani says that she was surprised by the charges.
"Yeah, I was surprised," said 'Jane', who asked that FOX 4 not reveal her identity. "I find it hard for an individual to stand at the counter, in a place like America, and act like they're comfortable, and yet treat us like, I don't know what to say there, we're the enemy. Treat us like the enemy."
Jane says that Ouazzani started buying parts from her in 2006, but that he soon asked to be extended credit. After she agreed, Jane says that Ouazzani stopped paying his bills, and that he still owes her nearly $3,000 that she doesn't expect to ever see.
She says that values of salvaged auto parts fluctuate wildly, so it might be easier than one thinks to inflate the value of the business to obtain loans for more than it was worth. Jane also says it wasn't unusual in 2007 and 2008 for many parts dealers to fall behind on their bills and not pay.
Jane says that she does understand how an auto parts business could be used to funnel cash to terrorists.
"It probably would've been easy to move the cash around, if a person wants to think about it, meditate on it, figure it out," said Jane. "I'm sure they could accomplish it."