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Reports: Armed Iranian National Nabbed in Palm Beach, Fla.

Palm Beach
Aerial view of the Palm Beach, Fla., coastline. (Dreamstime)

By    |   Friday, 10 January 2020 05:55 PM

An Iranian national armed with knives, a machete and pick ax, and $22,000 was being held by police at Palm Beach, Fla., on Friday, reports say.

Authorities searched a car parked at the Palm Beach International Airport, the Palm Beach Daily News reported. There was no immediate report on what, if anything, was found in the car.

According to the local news outlet, the man, identified by his passport as an Iranian national, was arrested at the Flagler Memorial Bridge, and had camping gear with him. He was taken into custody, and local police were cooperating with federal authorities, the news outlet reported.

The Flagler Memorial Bridge is about four miles from President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club. Trump was in Washington on Friday.

WPTV reported the man had no known address.

The arrest follows other troubling incidents on the island.

On Monday, a person was taken into custody at Mar-a-Lago by Secret Service with the assistance of Palm Beach Police and the Palm Beach Sheriff’s Office, but a redacted police report only revealed an arrest had been made and a passenger vehicle towed.

On Sunday night, an hour before Trump left from Palm Beach International Airport, a Florida man who had been dishonorably discharged from the Marines for sex offenses was arrested after authorities said he got past two checkpoints by falsely identifying himself as part of the president's helicopter crew.

Iran reportedly put an $80 million bounty on Trump's head, triggering beefed-up security in recent days.

The president’s private club has also had its own security breaches, with at least three trespassing events over the past 14 months, two of them involving Chinese nationals.

Last month, Jing Lu, 56, was confronted by the private club's security officers and told to leave, but returned to take photos, police said. She then fled. Palm Beach officers were called and arrested her about a mile away.

Lu was charged with loitering and prowling. Her case is pending. Neither the president nor his family was at the club.

In March, Yujing Zhang, a 33-year-old Shanghai businesswoman, gained access to Mar-a-Lago by telling Secret Service agents she was there to swim. Club staff then confused her for a member's daughter and admitted her before she was stopped in the lobby by a suspicious clerk who alerted other agents.

Zhang was carrying a laptop, phones and other electronic gear, which led to initial speculation that she might be a spy, but she was never charged with espionage and text messages she exchanged with a trip organizer indicated she was a fan of the president and wanted to meet him or his family to discuss possible deals.

Zhang was found guilty in September of trespassing and lying to Secret Service agents. She was sentenced to time served and ordered deported.

Iran reportedly put an $80 million bounty on Trump's head, triggering beefed up security in recent days.

Mar-a-Lago is more vulnerable to unlawful intrusion than previous presidential retreats because it is a working business that admits members and their guests daily on to the grounds, even when the president is present.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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An Iranian national armed with knives, a machete and pick ax, and $22,000 was being held by police at Palm Beach, Fla., on Friday, reports say. Authorities searched a car parked at the Palm Beach International Airport, the Palm Beach Daily News reported. There was no...
irantrumpfloridamar, a, lago
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2020-55-10
Friday, 10 January 2020 05:55 PM
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