A man accused of locking a woman in a homemade cell had a handwritten plan and sketch, FBI says

This undated photo provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Portland Field Office shows a makeshift cinderblock cell in Klamath Falls, Ore. allegedly used by 29-year-old, Negasi Zuberi. Authorities say Zuberi who posed as an undercover police officer kidnapped a woman in Seattle, drove her hundreds of miles to his home in Oregon, and kept her in a makeshift cell from which she eventually escaped and found help. The FBI said Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023, that police in Reno, Nevada, arrested Zuberi after he fled from his home in Klamath Falls, Oregon, where he had taken the Seattle woman. (FBI via AP)
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By Andrew Selsky and Gene Johnson

Associated Press

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — He called it “Operation Take Over,” with a list that included a chilling reminder to go after women who wouldn’t be missed to avoid “any kind of an investigation,” according to the FBI.

Accompanying the bullet-point notes was a sketch of an apparent dungeon, to be built with cinder blocks, foam insulation and waterproof concrete.

Police found the legal pad with the notes in the southern Oregon home of a man who is now a suspect in sexual assaults around the country. Also in the home: a cinder block cell where police say the man, Negasi Zuberi, held a woman he had allegedly kidnapped in Seattle until she escaped by pounding at the door with bloodied hands.

Court and police records show Zuberi, 29, had been on law enforcement’s radar before — for offenses such as punching someone in the face and being a bad tenant whose landlord sought to evict him.

The FBI set up a website asking anyone who believes they may have been a victim to come forward. The site says the FBI’s investigation has extended to states where Zuberi, who used several aliases, including Sakima, previously resided since August 2016. Those states could include California, Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Utah, Florida, New York, New Jersey, Alabama and Nevada, the site says.

In the Seattle kidnapping on July 15, Zuberi solicited a woman for prostitution in an area known for sex work and afterward posed as an undercover police officer, the FBI said Wednesday. He handcuffed her, put her in leg irons and drove to Klamath Falls, Oregon, stopping to rape her on the way, according to court documents. After the woman escaped, Zuberi fled but was arrested by state police in Reno, Nevada, the next afternoon, the FBI said.

Zuberi is married and has a child, but the FBI did not say whether they were living in the Klamath Falls home and declined to answer questions about them.

Zuberi did not follow item No. 1 in the “Operation Take Over” plan that police found in the house — a reminder to leave his phone at home, authorities say. FBI Special Agent Travis Gluesenkamp said in an affidavit that GPS location data from Zuberi’s cellphone showed he was in Seattle on July 15. Both his phone and the woman’s phone also traveled from Seattle to Klamath Falls that day, Gluesenkamp said.

Zuberi is now behind bars in Nevada, waiting to be extradited to Oregon, where he is charged in federal court with interstate kidnapping and transporting an individual across state lines with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.