Rezwan Matin Ferdaus, born and raised in Massachusetts, has been in trouble with the law before.
The Ashland terror suspect arrested by the FBI this week was also arrested in for marijuana possession while he was a Northeastern University student.
Ashland police stopped him in 2005 after his car ran a red light. Police smelled marijuana in the car, according to a police report, and found two plastic bags of the drugs inside the vehicle.
Ferdaus admitted to sufficient facts, and the case was continued without a finding.
Earlier, while a student at Ashland High, Ferdaus and two friends were charged with vandalizing the school.
His attorney asked that Ferdaus be placed on pre-trial probation because he was heading to Northeastern on a scholarship and he was worried that a finding in the case could jeopardize that scholarship. The judge agreed, ordering Ferdaus to pay $400 in restitution.
Ferdaus, or Rez, as he called himself, and his friends wrote a letter to their Ashland high school classmates admitting they poured concrete in front of school doors but denying they burned tennis nets and an American flag. They wrote they were being accused of crimes they did not commit, saying, “We are screwed, royally” and asked that anyone with information to “Please come forward and let the truth be known.”
Ferdaus’ attorney in that case, Peter Bella, told FOX Undercover that he was “surprised like anybody else.
“You always hope you’re not going to see your clients get in trouble again,” Bella said. “Ferdaus seemed like a well-adjusted kid.”
FOX Undercover has also found new information about Ferdaus’ family history.
Public records show Ferdaus was born in 1985 while his parents lived in an apartment on Silver Hill Lane in Natick. His older brother Farhad was born the year before when the family lived on Virginia Road in Holbrook.
When the Ferdaus children were born, their mother, Ana Maria Ferdaus, listed her occupation as “homemaker” and “housewife”. Their father, Showket Ferdaus, was an engineer.
Showket and Ana Maria were married in January 1981 at The Islamic Center of New England in Quincy. Their marriage certificate shows he was a 28-year-old native of Bangladesh working as an engineer and she was a 23-year-old student born in Cape Verde.
The Center’s former imam, who took over in 1982, told FOX Undercover that he didn’t believe the family was active in the mosque.
Before graduating from Northeastern in 2008, Ferdaus was also a drummer in the band Goosepimp Orchestra. But at some point Ferdaus dropped out of the band, apparently as his spiritual side developed.
An old message on the band’s website referred to Ferdaus’ leaving, saying, “Rezwan ‘Bollywood’ Ferdaus was the original drummer when the band formed in 2004 but then moved on to become a devout spiritual practitioner.”