Rafic M. Labboun
Rafic Mohammed Labboun (Arabic: رفيق لبّون; born: 1968; a.k.a. Rafic Al-Labboun; a.k.a. Hajj Rafic; ; a.k.a. Hajj Rafik; a.k.a. Hajj Rafiq) is the highest ranking Hezbollah cadre in the San Francisco Bay Area. He is a Lebanese national and a naturalized citizen of the United States of America. Labboun is a mathematician who graduated from the University of California, Berkeley (Cal). He is known in the Bay Area Khomeinist Shia community as a very energetic and highly connected Islamist activist. Labboun served as an in-house mullah at the extremist Khomeinist organization Shia Association of Bay Area (SABA Islamic Center) of San Jose, California. Labboun remained as SABA's main imam until SABA center contracted the now-discredited Nabi R. Mir (a.k.a. Nabi Raza Abidi), an Indian national and a dedicated Khomeinist extremist from Alipur, Karnataka, India, and a graduate of the seminaries of Qom, Iran, as its resident mullah (in-house cleric) in 2002. Labboun was also a frequent religious speaker at the now-closed Iraqi Community Association (ICA) center of San Francisco, CA. He also preached at the Fatimiyya Islamic Center of Hayward, CA.
Labboun suddenly left the United States along with his pregnant American wife, Tracy Marie Becker, and two daughters in 2002 to live in Lebanon for good. He initially resided with his widowed mother at his childhood home in Haret Hreik (Arabic: حارة حريك), a district of the infamous, overly-crowded, Hezbollah-infested, Dahieh (Arabic: الضاحية). Labboun eventually moved to the adjacent Bir Hassan (Arabic: بئر حسن) neighborhood in south Beirut.
- 1 Labboun the Book Translator
- 2 Labboun the Businessman
- 3 2006 Trip to the United States
- 4 Arrest in 2009
- 5 The United States of America vs. Rafic M. Labboun
- 6 "As it would not be a great surprise from opperessors"
- 7 Is Labboun a "human rights activist?"
- 8 More on the Facebook invite
- 9 Early life
- 10 Religious focus
- 11 Back at SABA mosque
- 12 Famous Lebanese people who share Labboun's first name
- 13 Relevant people who have been also accused of fraud
- 14 Alternative names and name spellings
- 15 Notes and references
- 16 Article publishing history
- 17 Also see
- 18 External links
Labboun the Book Translator
Rafic M. Labboun is also known for his very high interest in al-Imam al-Husayn ibn Ali (Arabic: الإمام الحسين بن علي، عليهما السلام), PBUT, and his martyrdom in Karbala (Arabic: كربلاء), Iraq. Al-Husayn, PBUH, is the maternal grandson of Prophet Muhammad, PBUH&HF, and the son of Imam Ali ibn Abi Taleb (Arabic: علي بن أبي طالب، صلوات الله عليه), PBUH, and Lady Fatimah az-Zahra (Arabic: فاطمة الزهراء، صلوات الله عليها), PBUH. Consequently, Labboun chose to translate one of the Arabic books about al-Husayn, PBUH, to English. Labboun also had plans to translate a book about Lady Zeinab ibnat Ali (Arabic: السيدة زينب إبنة علي، عليهما السلام), PBUT, but had to postpone his work on this project due to his business and other involvements in Dahieh, Lebanon.
Labboun the Businessman
Labboun eventually started a merchandising business in Dahieh, Lebanon, in partnership with Lebanese Shiites from his former SABA congregation of San Jose, California. He and the "shabab" (Arabic for "the young men." Arabic: الشباب. Important note: Not related to the Somalia-based ash-Shabaab terrorist organization) opened a three-story mini-mall, which is very large by Lebanese standards. But with financing from the U.S.- and Canada-based "shabab," the commercial project was developed with ease.
2006 Trip to the United States
Labboun briefly visited the Bay Area in January 2006, where he led Moharram and Ashoura Shia sermons at the Fatimiyya Islamic Center of Hayward, CA. Labboun also exported merchandise from Costco for his Lebanon-based business.
Arrest in 2009
On December 30, 2008, Labboun returned again to the San Francisco Bay Area to preach at Fatimiyya and lead Moharram programs there. His trip on the way to the United States, where he was planning to spend two weeks, was uneventful; however, on Monday, January 12, 2009, while Labboun was at the San Francisco International Airport on his way back to Lebanon, he was arrested by special agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The alleged cause of arrest is bank fraud. The U.S. government accused Rafic M. Labboun of executing schemes to materially defraud several American financial institutions using credit cards and bad checks.
The United States of America vs. Rafic M. Labboun
Upon the arrest of Labboun, U.S. attorney Elise Becker was assigned to the case of the United States of America versus Rafic M. Labboun. U.S. attorney Hartley West became involved in the case too. She now represent the U.S. Government in court.
Initially, the San Jose-based federal public defender Barry Portman and assistant federal public defender Nicholas P. Humy (a.k.a. Nick Humy) were assigned to represent Labboun in court. Later on, Labboun hired the high-profile Sacramento, CA, attorney Mark Reichel to defend him. Mr. Reichel is Vice President of the Sacramento Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). After the 9/11 abhorrent terror attacks on the United States, Mr. Reichel was given the opportunity by the federal courts to defend inmates at the Guantanamo Naval Base in their terrorism trials; however, in 2005, that chance was taken away when Congress stripped the courts of that authority.
- Case number: 5:09-cr-00058-RMW
- Offense charged: Felony
- Prior related case number: 5-09-70024 PVT
Trial of Rafic M. Labboun
- Court Schedule of Rafic M. Labboun
- Verdict in USA vs Rafic M. Labboun
- Tweets From the Trial of Rafic M. Labboun
- Sentence of Rafic M. Labboun
- Where is Rafic M. Labboun?
- Ya RAFIC
- Ya RAFIC Lyrics
"As it would not be a great surprise from opperessors"
Upon the arrest of Rafic M. Labboun, his California-based pro-Hezbollah followers set-up a public Facebook invite that included the following message:
So who are these non-surprising "oppressors" that the candid author of the Facebook invite is complaining about? Of course, these are the members of the U.S. government and by extension the American people. Indeed, the United States is a republic and its government mirrors the will of the people who have elected it. Obviously, such passively hostile attitude towards America by the domestic followers and supporters of Labboun (mostly immigrants from mostly very troubled countries such as Afghanistan, India, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, and Pakistan) is not born in a vacuum. It is the result of toxic indoctrination by the people who are in a position to influence the community to which Labboun and his supporters belong. The chain of command of this community passes directly or indirectly, passively or actively, through many suspicious organizations, dark tunnels and bunkers, false turbans and long vanity robes and ends with a (mortal) man called by his followers "as-Sayyed al-Qa'ed" (Arabic: السيد القائد) or, in English, "the Leader Master," who is none other than Mr. Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of Iran and Guide of its now-defunct Revolution (Arabic: مرشد الثورة).
There are many Americans from all walks of life who would undoubtedly agree with the followers of Labboun that the U.S. government has been at times oppressive, irresponsible, and arrogant (just think of Donald Rumsfeld, the famously "abrasive character" from the Department of Defense, or George W. Bush (a.k.a. "W") celebrating "Mission Accomplished" by flying to a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier off the coast of San Diego, California), both domestically and overseas. This was recently manifested by America's open rejection of the failed economic and foreign policies of former president "W" and the landslide election of Barack Hussein Obama (a.k.a. "Abu Hussein", Arabic for Father of Hussein. Arabic: أبو حسين) as the 44th President of the United States. Though it must be noted that patriotic Americans might at times dislike and oppose their government out of love and for totally and entirely different reasons than those of Ali Khamenei and his adoring mobs. Indeed, the average American is interested in making his/her country move forward (e.g., from slavery to equality; better education; alternative energy; fair foreign policy; etc.). On the other hand, the open and ultimate aim and goal of Ali "Rahbar" Khamenei and his loud crowds is the destruction of "Greater Satan" (i.e., The United States). Their bloody intentions are continuously manifested in massive gathering on the streets of south Tehran, Iran, and Dahieh (at the Rayeh field. Arabic: ملعب الراية), Lebanon, during which they drive themselves into frenzy while shouting "Death to America!"
To many people, there is no doubt that the U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East has been deeply faulty and unjust, but one expects both recent immigrants and American-born and naturalized U.S. citizens to exercise their constitutional rights and oppose what they perceive as wrong through respected and legitimate democratic channels such as political publishing and lobbying instead of bitterly rejecting the country outright while paradoxically insisting on living in it and off its system. Drink not from a well and then piss down in it! Truly, that's not the way of Muhammad and the Family of Muhammad, PBUH&T.
Is Labboun a "human rights activist?"
Is Rafic M. Labboun a "human rights activist?" The answer to this question depends on where you stand and how you choose to see things, as everything is relative (to one's position)! For instance, many people in the West might consider the murder of journalists, bloggers, and demonstrators such as the martyr Neda Agha Soltan (Farsi: شهيده ندا آقا سلطان، رحمها الله) by the Absolute Velayat-e Faqih Regime of Iran to be a horrendous crime. But pro-Khamenei activists might see this as such: "Rahbar" (i.e. Khamenei) is a human and his holiness has the right to torture, rape, sodomize, and ultimately kill those who criticize him as he is the "Vice-Mahdi" and "Representative of God and His Messenger, PBUH&HF, on Earth." (Of course, it must be noted that it is nowhere found in Islam that rape and sodomy are a sanctioned form of punishment.) From such a position, it should be quite clear to see that criticizing "Rahbar" is the same as criticizing God. (The same concept applies even to lesser Faqihi clerics as they represent "Rahbar"--with some basic logic one can easily deduce that criticizing a mortal pro-Absolute Velayat-e Faqih cleric who represents "Rahbar" who represents God is an unforgivable sin.) Hence, the followers of "Rahbar" (who is, again, a human, for sure, and has very deadly rights -- no kidding!) who kill journalists, bloggers, and unarmed demonstrators are in fact "human•rights•activists."
Likewise, many people consider the Zionist settlers in the West Bank, who are mostly descendants of Israelites (the progeny of Prophet Jacob son of Prophet Isaac son of Prophet Abraham, PBUT), to be "human rights activists." Indeed, the ancient Israelites were ordered by God, may He increase His blessings, to conquer the pagan-controlled Canaan under the leadership of Prophet Joshua, PBUH, and inhabit it. However, it must be noted that God has not ordered the Zionist settlers to displace the God-worshiping Palestinians, for Israel is a secular entity established by a United Nations mandate and not led by a holy Prophet. Nevertheless, the settlers are humans and do have real and imaginary rights. Activists who choose the path of defending the "rights" of the Zionist settlers can consider themselves "human rights activists" as well.
Is Prophet Muhammad, PBUH&HF a human rights activists? By all standards he undoubtedly is. Sufficient to say that he is a Prophet chosen by God to convey His message of unlimited mercy to mankind. Prophet Muhammad, PBUH&HF, was incarnated in Mecca at a time when his fellow Arabians denied all and every right to women and buried most of their new-born baby girls alive upon their birth. Through His Arabian Messenger, PBUH&HF, God revealed laws that forbade and ended such practices and held the parents of the victims of infanticide accountable here and in the hereafter. With the concurrence of God, Prophet Muhammad, PBUH&HF, brought civilization to a chaotic society that had thrived on never-ending tribal raids. Nevertheless, there are those who dislike Prophet Muhammad, PBUH&HF, and refuse to recognize his unlimited accomplishments. Still others insist on blaming him for the acts of terrorism committed by rogue Muslims who went astray (e.g., Osama bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri, the late Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, Hassan Nasrallah, Naim Qassem, the late Imad Fayez Mughniyah, etc.).
Again, every thing is relative. As such, there are many who would consider Rafic M. Labboun to be a "human rights activists" while others might strongly disagree.
More on the Facebook invite
In a subsequent version of the Facebook invite, which was posted for only a few days and deleted in the same week, its author retracted and removed the phrases referring to Rafic M. Labboun as a "human rights activist" and the members of the U.S. government as "oppressors."
Rafic M. Labboun was born to a Lebanese Sunni-Muslim family. He was raised in the Haret Hreik (Arabic: ) neighborhood of Dahieh (Arabic: ), the predominantly-Shia, Hezbollah-controlled, overcrowded slums located south of Beirut. Haret Hreik was once a thriving Christian-majority town, but it was ethnically-cleansed when its original inhabitants fled to other areas during Lebanon's long and bloody civil war. Unlike most Southerners and Baalbakis who live in Haret Hreik and other parts of Dahieh, the Labbouns are natives there. The others are considered jalab (Arabic for brought in. Arabic: جلب).
The Labbouns had the highest profile neighbor in the entire Middle East, for they shared the same apartment building with none other than the infamous Hassan Nasrallah (Arabic: حسن نصر الله; a.k.a. Abou Hady), the leader and co-founder of Hezbollah. (The governments of the United States and many other countries recognize that Hezbollah is a dangerous, deceptive, and manipulative terrorist organization.) Nasrallah's "Men of God" (Arabic: رجال الله) converted the entire surrounding neighborhoods into a fortress filled with dark concrete watchtowers and underground tunnels, armed guards in black uniforms, and lurking security men disguised as civilians. The building where Labboun and Nasrallah once together resided was obliterated by the Israeli air force during the 2006 Lebanon War. Labboun's mother, who was still residing there at the time, was evacuated prior to the destruction of the infamous building; both Mrs. Labboun and Hassan Nasrallah survived the devastating raids.
The Faqihi Fad
It's Absolute Velayat-e Faqih, fake and bad,
Khamenei is Leader, a tyrant Vlad,
And greedy mullahs, power-mad,
False turbans, vanity robes-clad,
And frenzied mobs, pathetic and sad,
All shall expire, am I not glad?
Until it's over, declare jihad,
Protect your freedom, fight back the cad,
For "rebellion to tyranny is obedience to Dad!"
Influenced by their neighbors, Labboun, along with his two brothers, converted to Shia-Islam. His brothers were subsequently killed during Lebanon's various wars and conflicts. At least one of Labboun's brothers studied at the Shia religious seminaries of Qom, Iran, prior to his killing. The violent death of Rafic's siblings has added to his prestige and credibility in the pro-Absolute Velayat-e Faqih communities, as his late brothers are considered shouhada (Arabic for martyrs. Arabic: شهداء) by such peoples.
Labboun eventually traveled to the United States. According to one of his local Persian fans, he lived in Arizona for sometime. He then moved to the Bay Area and enrolled at UC Berkeley, where he met Mary, his future American wife. Mary converted to Shia-Islam and changed her name to Sukayna (Arabic: سكينة).
In the Bay Area, Labboun became highly active in the Islamic community, visiting the various Shia centers and infiltrating the Sunni mosques. A remarkable man, he became famous for engaging the devout Sunnis and non-Muslim Americans in religious debates and quickly converting them to the invented Absolute Velayat-e Faqih strain of Twelver Shia Islam. This was a no easy task, but Labboun was helped by his deep knowledge of both major branches of Islam (Sunni and Shia), personal charm and charisma, and projected expertise in Shia metaphysics.
Much of Labboun's religious focus is dedicated to the Lord of the Martyrs, al-Imam al-Hussein, PBUH. But Labboun has an equal focus on the topic of ithar (Arabic for altruism. Arabic: إيثار), which is the practice of preferring others to one self. Ithar is similar to sharing and charity but goes a step further. In Labboun's words, "ithar is when you share 51% or more of what you have" with others. Famous Americans who practice and set the standards of ithar in the West (indeed worldwide) include Bill Gates, the legendary founder of Microsoft, and Warren Buffett, the world's most famous investor.
In essence, ithar is all about bringing about relief to others in the path of pleasing and loving God and generating good will in the world. Degenerate and rogue Muslims who misunderstand the noble concept but talk a lot about it at the pulpits of Prophet Muhammad, PBUH&HF, quite often choose to practice negative ithar by insisting on sharing and projecting much of their ills and troubles with the rest of the world. On the Sunni takfiri side, think of 9/11 and the "martyrs" who "sacrificed" their lives to "share" a lot of chaos with the American people. On the Absolute Velayat-e Faqih takhwini and tashriqi side, think of the enraged mobs who scream "Death to America" or persecute and kill journalists, bloggers, and unarmed demonstrators who criticize "Rahbar" (i.e., Ali Khamenei) or other falsely turbaned Faqihi clerics.
Negative ithar is practiced by people from all creeds and races. For instance, the Zionist settlers in the West Bank keep expanding their illegal settlements over Palestinian lands under the pretext of pleasing the Lord of Israel (God, may He increase His blessings) and protecting the Jewish people. The end result of such oppressive and abhorrent practices is the expansion of the world's conflicts, which plays directly into the very left hand of warmonger Ali Khamenei and his hand-kissing marionettes (e.g., Hassan Nasrallah and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and their likes).
Kissing the hands of politicians is a very ancient Persian tradition. Prior to the 1979 Iranian Revolution (Farsi: انقلاب), officials in Iran used to kiss the right hand of the highly arrogant and despised Shah (Farsi: شاه). After the Revolution, the officials of the new regime started kissing the left hand of Ali Khamenei. (Ali was "president" during the rule of Iran's first supreme leader, the late Ruhollah Khomeini.) It became popular for them to put on hand-kissing shows in front of reporters and TV cameras. The message: Khamenei is the one and only boss. In essence, the peoples of the Iranian nation have been fooled by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (Arabic: خميني), who replaced the rule of the fallen Shah with his very own brutal dictatorship, but under a new and fancy name: Absolute Velayat-e Faqih! Think this: A far more oppressive version of the Shah but with a new packaging and marketing theme, all in the name of God and Islam!
It is a common practice among the Shia of Ameer al-Momineen (Arabic for the Commander of the Faithfuls. Arabic: أمير المؤمنين، صلوات الله عليه) Ali ibn Abi Taleb, PBUH, to kiss the right hands of devout, dedicated, and pure Islamic scholars such Grand Ayatollah as-Sayyed Ali al-Husseini as-Sistani (Arabic: آية الله العظمى السيد علي الحسيني السيستاني), may God bless his soul and protect him. Indeed, Ayatollah Sistani has never assumed positions which are not his nor did he persecute, torture, or murder others.
Back at SABA mosque
Not too long after his arrest, Rafic M. Labboun resumed his activities at some of the Bay Area's pro-Absolute Velayat-e Faqih centers, including SABA Mosque. Rafic periodically offers inspiring speeches at SABA and Fatimiyya Islamic Center among other places.
- Internationally renowned Lebanese statesman and martyr Rafic Hariri (Arabic: الشهيد رفيق الحريري). According to journalist Erich Follath of the German magazine Der Spiegel, it was Hezbollah who had murdered Mr. Hariri and his companions in 2005.
Relevant people who have been also accused of fraud
- Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the discredited Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Apparently, too many Iranians strongly believe that their current government is neither Islamic (as it is not fair and just) nor a republic (as it does not reflect the will of the people)!! (Is it the "Khameneite Empire in Iran?" Arabic: الأمبراطورية الخامنئية في إيران.) They have alleged that Khamenei and his private marionette Ahmadi Nejad have ran a fraudulent "presidential" "election" in June 2009. Khamenei readily denied any guilt and with the help of "human rights activists" (i.e., Basij thugs, privilege-seeking Revolutionary Guard Corps mercenaries, and alien Hezbollah terrorists) he quickly reconfirmed his favorite marionette as the new selected "president." Four more years of the international troublemaker!??
Alternative names and name spellings
- رفبق لبون
- المهندس رفيق لبون
- الشيخ رفيق
- رفيق محمد لبون
- رفيق بن محمد
- U.S. Legal name: Rafic M. Labboun
- Lebanese legal name: Rafic Mohammed Al-Labboun
- Traditional Arab name: Rafic ibn Mohammed
- Alternative first name spellings: Rafi, Rafic, Rafik, Rafiq
- Alternative surname spellings: Labboon, Labboun, Laboon, Laboun
- Honorific names: Eng. Rafic M. Labboun, Haj Rafic, Hajj Rafic, Hajji Rafic, Sheikh Rafic, Shaikh Rafic, etc.
Notes and references
- Hezbollah (Arabic: "حزب الله"; a.k.a. Hizbullah; a.k.a. Hizballah) is an international terrorist organization based in Lebanon. Hezbollah has operatives stationed throughout the world, including the United States and Europe. For more information, please see: What is Hezbollah?
- * A.S.: Aaleyhi as-Salam, Arabic for Peace be upon him (Arabic: عليه السلام).
- Felony: A serious crime.
- Dad is the Lord God, absolute owner and master of all that exists.
- takfiri: (Arabic: تكفيري) This is a rogue theological concept openly upheld by Sunni extremists (e.g., members of al-Qaeda terror organization), whereby such fanatics consider the followers of other Islamic sects, including Sunni but particularly Shiite sects, to be kafir and halal to kill and persecute. Hezbollah also maintains such a doctrine but privately as it prefers to softly infiltrate and convert Sunni and other societies from within. Nevertheless, Hezbollah does not have second thoughts about showing its poisonous fangs and claws when its hegemony in Lebanon is defied or challenged. Hence, on May 7, 2008, Hezbollah did not hesitate to violently invade the Sunni neighbourhoods of West Beirut and the Druze villages of Mount Lebanon. Indeed, in the 1980's, the terror organization butchered hundreds of Shiites from other political organizations, including the popular Amal Movement (Arabic: حركة أمل), in both Dahieh and South Lebanon.
- takhwini: (Arabic: تخويني) This is the infamous practice by the Absolute Velayat-e Faqih regime and its Hezbollah terror arm of declaring those who oppose or defy them as well as those whom they dislike for any real or imaginary reasons to be traitors and agents of the West, agents of Zionism, agents of "Greater Satan" (i.e., the United States of America), CIA agents, FBI agents, and Mossad agents. After the June 2009 Iranian "elections" troubles, the conservatives in Iran accused the leadership of the reformists (e.g., Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, Mohammad Khatami, Mehdi Karroubi, and Mir Hossein Mousavi) who defied the will of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei to be "Agents of the West." (Note here that the first of these men is an Ayatollah, a co-founder of the Absolute Velayat-e Faqih Regime, and a former president; the second is a Sayyed, a cleric whose rank is Hojjat-ol-Islam, and a former two-term president; the third is a cleric and a former speaker of parliament; the fourth is a Sayyed and a former prime minister. These men are the Absolute Velayat-e Faqih Regime!) The false label (i.e., agent. Arabic: عميل), which is meant to be extremely offensive, has been so much overused by the Velayat crowds to the point where it has lost its destructive slanderous effect. With so much abuse in the name of religion, many devout Muslims have become true and firm believers that Ali Khamenei and his followers are in fact dedicated Agents of Satan (عباد النفس وحزب الشيطان).
- tashriqi: (Arabic: تشريكي) On the basis of the invented Absolute Velayat-e Faqih theological concept, those who reject, oppose, or defy the Vali e Faqih (Arabic: الولي الفقيه. Farsi: ولي فقيه. I.e., The late Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini (الأول) and Ali Khamenei (الثاني) are in a state of ishrak (Arabic: إشراك) or worshiping God along with other (false) deities. Such deities are not necessarily only named pagan gods but can be the false desires of the Self (the spirit). As such, the Muslims who reject the leadership of Ali Khamenei are not worshiping God properly and instead succumbing to their worldly whims and the temptation of the cursed Satan. To the Velayat indocrinators, such Muslims are not in a stable psychological state and are halal to torture and persecute (to induce them to renounce their false beliefs and correct their satanic behavior), and ultimately execute (to prevent them from corrupting society) as they are not true believers in God.
Article publishing history
This first version of this article was released here on 8 April 2009.
- Abdul Alim Musa
- Alipur: A Mini Iran in Karnataka
- Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
- Mohamad Ali El Husseini
- Nabi R. Mir (a.k.a. Nabi Raza Abidi)
- Rafic M. Labboun
- Shia Association of Bay Area (Saba Center)
- The "Unknown Money"
- About Rafic M. Labboun
- Fatimiyya Islamic Center of Hayward, California
- Federal Bureau of Investigation
- Website of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei
- Reichel Law: Sacramento Criminal Defense Attorney
- The San Francisco Bay Area Shia Islamic Community (SF*BASIC): A News Site
- The Shia Association of Bay Area Monitor
- United States District Courts - Northern District of California