FBI officials are hoping that a $250,000 reward may lead to the capture of a suspected domestic terrorist -- wanted for three bombings in Northern California -- who they believe may be hiding in Hawaii.
Authorities are combing Hawaii’s Big Island and focusing on the Puna and Pahoa communities south of Hilo on the island’s eastern edge, where animal rights activist Daniel Andreas San Diego may be hiding, FBI officials said.
A federal arrest warrant was issued for San Diego, 36, in October 2003. The FBI added him to its most-wanted terrorists list in 2009, the first alleged domestic terrorist to be placed on it.
It is unclear what led authorities to narrow their focus to Hawaii, but FBI Special Agent Tom Simon told the Maui News that they were “taking this lead seriously out of genuine concern for local residents.”
Authorities announced the quarter-million dollar reward for information leading to San Diego’s capture and conviction on Wednesday.
“We hope that people on the Big Island may like the idea of a quarter-million dollars more than they like having an accused bomber hiding in their community,” Simon told Maui News.
FBI officials warned that San Diego should be considered armed and dangerous.
At the end of February, the FBI started plastering San Diego’s picture on several billboards across the U.S. with the words “Wanted” and “Domestic Terrorism/Use of Explosives” as well as the call-in number: 1-800-CALL-FBI.
FBI officials said that over the last decade they have received tips placing San Diego in a range of places, including San Rafael and Northampton in Mass., and that he has ties to Germany, Spain, France, Italy, Costa Rica and Bolivia.
To avoid capture, he may have altered several distinct tattoos on his torso, authorities said.
In 2003, San Diego had several tattoos, including a round image of a burning hillside in the center of his chest with the words “It only takes a spark” printed in a semicircle underneath; burning and collapsing buildings on his sides and back; and a single leafless tree rising from a road on his lower back.
Anyone with information on San Diego’s whereabouts is asked to contact the nearest FBI office or call 911. The FBI’s San Francisco office can be reached at (415) 553-7400. All calls are confidential, authorities said.