BAGHDAD (Apr. 3, 2008) - Coalition forces detained a suspected Iranian-backed Special Groups criminal and two other suspects early this morning in the al-Hillah area, south of Baghdad.
Reports indicate the targeted suspect planned to assassinate Hillah police leaders and attempted to gather intelligence for Special Groups attacks to disrupt security in the area. He is also suspected of distributing $100,000 to Special Groups cells south of Baghdad.
During the operation, while the ground force was moving to the target area, unknown individuals fired upon Coalition forces, who returned fire in self-defense. A Coalition force helicopter also engaged the unknown individuals. One vehicle was destroyed, several structures were damaged, and three civilians were reportedly wounded. The incident is under investigation at this time.
When the ground force arrived at the target area, they captured the targeted individual and two other suspects without further incident.
"Iraqi and Coalition forces will continue to seek out and bring to justice criminals who target law enforcement personnel and threaten the security of Iraqi citizens," said Cmdr. Scott Rye, MNF-I spokesman.
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