DC judge wants deeper probe of possible foreign ties for men who allegedly impersonated federal agents

The hearing will continue on Monday at 3:30 p.m.

NEWYou can now listen to Fox News articles!

A U.S. District Court judge said he needed more information before making a decision on federal prosecutors' pretrial detention request on Friday for both men who are charged with impersonating a federal officer.

Arian Taherzadeh, 40, and Haider Ali, 35, were both arrested on Wednesday at a luxury apartment in the Navy Yard area of Washington, D.C. after the Federal Bureau of Investigations executed a search warrant with the assistance of multiple other government agencies.

Magistrate Judge Michael Harvey said during a detention hearing on Friday that he needs more information about Ali's travel history to Pakistan and Iran, additional details about "United Special Police LLC," which Taherzadeh allegedly controls, as well as detailed information about Taherzadeh's history as a deputized special police officer with the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, D.C.

Prosecutors say that at some point, Taherzadeh was a deputized police officer, but said that the designation came with very limited abilities.

Harvey said that this case is "complicated," adding he hasn't seen one similar before.


The detention hearing will continue on Monday at 3:30 p.m.

Prosecutors requested that the two men be detained prior to their trial, arguing that Ali is a flight risk and Taherzdeh could attempt to obstruct justice.

In the government's motion for detention, prosecutors say that the men's impersonation scheme was "sufficiently realistic to convince other government employees, including law enforcement agents, of their false identities."

Prosecutors allege that the individuals "compromised" Secret Service personnel who have access to the White House "by lavishing gifts upon them, including rent-free living."

During the Friday detention hearing, government prosecutors said that this is a "very serious" case.

"This is not a case of someone guarding your local Starbucks, the amount of equipment they had," the prosecutor said. "This is not just two people dressing up for Halloween your honor, this is very serious."

The two men face up to three years in jail as well as a fine of up to $250,000 if convicted.

The two men are accused of impersonating Department of Homeland Security employees and gave U.S. Secret Service agents gifts, including iPhones, apartments, and televisions, according to officials.

In one instance, Taherzadeh provided a Secret Service agent with one rent-free three-bedroom apartment, valued at $48,240. The Secret Service agent stayed at the apartment from February 2021 to January 2022, according to prosecutors.

On Wednesday, federal law enforcement officers recovered multiple firearms as well as ammunition while executing a search warrant. According to a court filing by federal prosecutors on Wednesday morning, "numerous electronic devices" were also found, including a "significant" amount of surveillance equipment, 30 hard drives, a machine that creates and programs Personal Identification Verification cards, and blank cards with chips.

Passports belonging to Ali were also recovered, and show two visas from Iran. Prosecutors say that the first visa authorized travel to Iran from July 31, 2019 through October 28, 2019, and the second from October 28, 2019 through January 25, 2020. 

The passports also contain visas from Pakistan.


Federal prosecutors also allege that Ali told two witnesses that he has some type of connection with the Pakistani Intelligence Service, the Inter-Services Intelligence. 

Ali allegedly made multiple trips to Doha, Qatar since 2019, according to prosecutors.

Taherzadeh and Ali's alleged impersonation of Department of Homeland Security employees began to unravel when a United States Postal Inspector arrived at their apartment complex to investigate an alleged assault which involved a United States Postal Service carrier, according to prosecutors.

The case was then handed to the Federal Bureau of Investigations.

According to a court filing, the men identified themselves as federal government employees to the inspector, and residents at the apartment complex said that they believe the two men had access to their personal information. 

One witness, who is a member of the Secret Service, said that Taherzadeh had access to "all floors of the apartment," including some restricted areas. The witness says that Taherzadeh was able to get this access by speaking with the apartment complex's management and identifying himself as a federal agent.


Fox News has confirmed that of the four Secret Service agents suspended in connection with the investigation, two of them worked for the uniformed division, and one of the agents' duties was in the vicinity of the residence of Vice President Harris, but not on her person detail.

A separate Secret Service agent who is now suspended was assigned to the Presidential Protective Division of First lady Jill Biden, and sources tell Fox News that it's possible this agent filled in for agents close to President Biden at times but was not on the president's regular security detail.

Fox News' David Spunt contributed to this report