Sunday, April 25, 2004 this

This is from CBS News for April 22.
All Ryan Allen wanted was a Chevrolet Cavalier.

Instead, a computer lent him a brand new identity as one of the alleged masterminds of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

On April 10, when Van Chevrolet in Kansas City checked his credit, Allen's Social Security number came up as belonging to Ramzi Bin al-Shibh, described by federal authorities as a senior al Qaeda operative suspected of helping to coordinate the Sept. 11 attacks.
The FBI was called but it expressed little interest, since al-Shibh was arrested two years ago in Pakistan and is now in prison.

Allen says
he has received no clear explanation of how his number could be connected to al-Shibh. And he said Treasury officials could not assure him the number wasn't used in other ways or that the problem would not recur.

"At one point (the Treasury Department) told me my name might have come up because the consonants are the same as this other guy," Allen said Wednesday. "Come on, Little Bo Peep is closer to his name than mine."

John Garlinger, a spokesman for the Kansas City region of Social Security, ... said Allen may continue to have troubles, particularly if he wants to travel overseas.

"It's unfortunate that he may spend hours and hours and hours trying to recover from this," Garlinger said.
Too bad he isn't a rich foreign traveler; he'd have Colin Powell lobbying for him.

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