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A Florida man was arrested last week after he attempted to pay someone $10,000 to murder his estranged girlfriend’s new fiancé, officials said.
Ryan Hadeed, 43, was busted by federal investigators for allegedly attempting to arrange the assassination using the U.S. mail earlier this year. He was arrested on Dec. 22.
In September, an unidentified witness who owns a gun store in Coral Springs received a “detailed letter” from Hadeed via the U.S. Postal Service. It allegedly laid out the groundwork for the intended murder-for-hire scheme.
Hadeed — who used the fake name “Alan Smithee” in his a return address — offered the individual $10,000 to execute an unspecified person in Tampa, according to charging documents.
“I need someone eliminated,” Hadeed wrote in the letter, according to a probable cause complaint obtained by Oxygen.com. “I've been told you can arrange that. $10,000 All in cash and upfront. Person located in Tampa. You can be there and back in a day. You get their photo, first name, work address, and home address.”
Hadeed is said to have promised to send payment and the identity of the intended target once the supposed hitman accepted the terms of the scheme.
To discreetly confirm the arrangement, Hadeed allegedly requested that the intended hitman go to a Coral Springs coffee shop at 11:00 a.m. on Oct. 11 and buy a cup of coffee. Hadeed also requested the individual place a “sheet of white paper” on his gun shop storefront window to signal the hit job was on.
The gun shop owner turned the letter over to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which launched an investigation.
At the behest of law enforcement, the gun store owner posted a white sheet of paper in his business’ window at the specified period of time in order to lure out and identify the letter’s sender. On Oct. 11, 2021, a grey Honda Accord registered to Hadeed’s brother was seen driving through the store’s parking lot. Hadeed was the only insured driver for the vehicle.
Four days later, Hadeed mailed a new letter to the gun store owner.
“I said there would be no more contact if you weren’t at the coffee shop at 11am on October 11th. I didn’t see you. But there was a white paper outside your storefront. But that could have been there from before. I’m not dragging this out.”
Despite saying he wouldn't drag it out, the sender then told the gun store owner to “mark a large X” on a white sheet of paper and affix it to his storefront for a “full week.”
“Once confirmed, you will get the money in full and the details on the person to be eliminated,” Hadeed added. “This is important. You could take the money and do nothing. I would be out 10gs and have to find someone else.”
Hadeed ended his correspondence by promising to arrange a second murder-for-hire job for the purported assassin in Georgia “if this works out.”
“There’s another job that will pay double or you name your price,” Hadeed wrote. “In a small town in Georgia. Or no more. Tampa first.”
There was no further information on the potential Georgia target.
The gun store proprietor again followed Hadeed’s instructions at the request of law enforcement and placed a white sheet of paper with a black "X" in his business’ window. Speed radar equipment later captured images of the grey Honda driving by the front of the gun store twice in late October.
Hadeed, who resides at three different homes with his family in a gated community in Coral Springs, withdrew $10,000 from a Wells Fargo Bank Account on Nov. 5, according to banking records obtained by investigators.
On Nov. 8, Hadeed sent the gun store owner a parcel containing $10,000 in cash and the identity of the murder-for-hire plot’s target, according to prosecutors. The package, which arrived on Nov. 10, contained Instagram photos of a white male identified only as “Ken,” included the Tampa man’s age, height, weight and home address.
“The day and time is up to you,” Hadeed stated in a fourth letter to the store owner. “You have the money so your holding all the cards. Will know when the subject is taken out. Need to be done before the end of 2021.”
The same day the cash and photos were delivered, Hadeed flew to Trinidad and Tobago on a one-way ticket he’d purchased more than two weeks earlier in what seemed to be an elaborate attempt to create an “airtight” alibi, prosecutors said.
Investigators then interviewed the target of the suspected assassination plot, along with the man’s fiancée. The man, who had no idea who may have wanted him dead, told detectives he’d received a creepy letter in May 2020 containing racy images of and written insults targeting his fiancée.
The man’s fiancée, identified only as “R.R.” in charging documents, told authorities that she suspected her former boyfriend, Hadeed, was behind the murder-for-hire scheme. Hadeed, she claimed, was “infatuated with her to an unhealthy degree” and incredibly jealous of her engagement. She also divulged that Hadeed had previously threatened to physically harm her when the two had dated.
On Dec. 15, Hadeed was detained during a secondary customs and immigration inspection at Miami International Airport upon flying back from Trinidad and Tobago. Border agents seized two of Hadeed’s mobile devices, which further connected him to the failed hit job.
The intimate images of the man’s fiancé, sent to him in 2020, were also recovered during the seizure. The pictures, investigators said, stemmed from a dozen images Hadeed had taken as screenshots during a FaceTime-like video chat with the woman, which they knew because Hadeed’s face was visible as a square in the upper right corner of the photographs.
A Long Island healthcare worker — whose name has been withheld from publication due to safety concerns — is also vaguely referenced in federal charging documents as someone with whom Hadeed met and to whom Hadeed sent texts to about driving a gray Honda Accord.
“It’s quite shocking,” the person, who reportedly met Hadeed in June to complete an eBay transaction, told Oxygen.com. “It’s surreal.”
The potential witness described Hadeed as “pleasant” and “very friendly,” and was stunned to learn of the alleged murder-for-hire plot.
The Long Island resident was on vacation in Florida when the two rendezvoused in a Shake Shack parking lot to facilitate the purchase of an air rifle described as a replica model of the fictitious M41A pulse rifle featured in James Cameron’s 1986 sci-fi blockbuster “Aliens.” (The functioning rifle, based on a sketch by Cameron, was constructed by armorers out of a Thompson submachine gun , a Remington Model 870 and a Franchi SPAS-12. All but one of the ones used in the movie were broken down after filming concluded.)
“[Hadeed] was very friendly and gave me a very fair price on the item,” the buyer added. “I told him I was excited about the item and I appreciate him working with me. We set up a place to meet…I met him...he arrived on time.”
The unidentified witness said the pair spoke of cinema and Hadeed’s medical issues during their brief interaction.
“I’ve never been involved in a situation like this,” the Long Islander said. “It’s sad, too… Unfortunately, this world — case in point, right here and now — shows you that sometimes you just don’t know who a person is.”
Hadeed was booked into a Broward County Detention Center last week, according to online jail records and made a brief appearance in Fort Lauderdale magistrate court on Dec. 23. He’s currently being held without bail, pending a pre-trial detention hearing on Dec. 29. He is expected to be arraigned on Jan. 7.
His court-appointed temporary counsel, Michael Entin, didn’t respond to Oxygen.com’s request for comment regarding the open case on Tuesday.
Homeland Security, United States Postal Inspection Service, the Florida Highway Patrol, and Coral Springs Police Department also assisted in the multi-agency investigation.
If convicted, Hadeed faces up to 10 years in a federal prison and a $250,000 fine.
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