An FBI investigation was initiated by a Muslim man who claimed to be Orthodox Jew and wanted to wed. He then claimed he was an NSA employee after his family caught him.

Eliyah Hawila, 23, whose real name is Ali Hassan Hawila and who hails from Lebanon, struck up an online relationship with Sally, a Jewish woman of Syrian descent who lives in Brooklyn, New York.

In what appears to be a lovestruck moment of madness, Haliwa went on to fabricate an entire backstory relating to his non-existent Jewish roots after his new bride became suspicious about his past. 

He claims that during his teenage years, he was obsessed with Judaism and tried to convert to it, but was rejected by the synagogue. 

Upon uncovering the deception, Sally's parents stepped in, called the FBI and pulled their daughter away from her husband

Upon uncovering the deception, Sally’s parents stepped in, called the FBI and pulled their daughter away from her husband

Eliyah Hawila, 23,  left, whose real name is Ali Hassan Hawila and who hails from Lebanon, struck up a relationship online with a Jewish woman of Syrian descent, Sally, seen right, who lived in Brooklyn, New York. Hawila, who was born Muslim, pretended he was Jewish

Eliyah Hawila, 23,  left, whose real name is Ali Hassan Hawila and who hails from Lebanon, struck up a relationship online with a Jewish woman of Syrian descent, Sally, seen right, who lived in Brooklyn, New York. Hawila who was Muslim was raised to believe he was Jewish

Hawila is now speaking out about his story, apologizing for his lies, professing love for his wife

Hawila has now spoken out and apologized for his lies. He also professes love for his spouse.

Hawila actually came from Tyre, southern Lebanon. She was the daughter of a Shiite Muslim family. 

As their relationship developed and deepened it wasn’t mentioned.

Hawila went as far as to learn Hebrew in order to recite Jewish prayers as well as signing up to a local Chabad community center at Texas A & M University in College Station, Texas, where he could study the Torah.

Also, he mentioned his Jewish heritage as his lineage contained fake Ashkenazic surnames such Meyer Lansky. This is the name of a former Jewish criminal gangster. 

Hawila and Sally were married in New York. However, she began to be suspicious about her husband’s past after discovering that he had a Lebanese passport with his Arabic name on it.

Sally immediately informed her close friends and relatives, who in turn called the police. Now, she is believed to be in safe custody.

Upon moving to the U.S. Hawila learned Hebrew and appeared to be a devout religious Jew

Hawila, upon moving to the U.S.A. learned Hebrew and seemed to be a religious Jew.

Hawila has shared wedding video which purports to show a couple having fun and in love

Hawila shared a wedding video that purports show a happy couple in love. 

The FBI is now investigating not just the alleged deception but Hawila’s claims that he worked as an agent for the NSA and even produced a ‘fake latter’ from coworkers at the agency to prove his employment. 

Along with the Israeli consulate, New York, US Department of Homeland Security are also investigating the possibility that the man entered the country illegally. 

According to them, there’s no evidence that he participated in terrorist activity.  

“My lies are not justifiable, but at one time I also lied because it was painful. But I am determined to rectify my error. I want them to understand where my pain is coming from,’ Hawila said to the Times of Israel. 

He said, through his tears, “Things began to come out, and the rumors started, and they took her away, and they separated us apart.” 

Hawila stated that his relationship to Judaism was not a temporary one and began when he was a child living in Lebanon with his family. 

I felt connected because this is who I am, it is the place I belong. So I came out to others and said ‘I’m Jewish. The streets started to spew on me and I was receiving death threats.

None of Hawila's family attended his wedding which only deepened suspicion over his background

Hawila was not accompanied by his entire family to his wedding. This only increased suspicions about Hawila.

Hawila says his family moved legally to the U.S. and that he started looking for synagogues around the region, originally hoping to convert to Islam. 

“When I was rejected, I just started saying that I was Jewish. Eliyah is my name. I picked this name because I loved the Elijah story. 

After studying engineering at Texas A&M he became active in Jewish and pro-Israel organizations with nobody expressing any doubts over his Middle Eastern background.

“I said that I still claimed I am from Lebanon, because I had read so much about the Lebanese Jewish Community and was very impressed.

Hawila said he claimed to be an NSA agent after being confronted by his wife about his Lebanese passport and Arabic name, pictured

Hawila stated that he is an NSA agent when questioned by his wife about the Lebanese citizenship and Arabic surname. 

Hawila stated that he is an NSA agent when confronted about his Lebanese passport. 

“When she saw this ID, I couldn’t help but make up something,” he said. 

“Time goes by and I meet with her parents, and we told the same story.” He added that her parents just “inspect everything” 

“Her father started to Google my name, until he reached my father, who told him some things about me. He said that he wasn’t Jewish and that he was not this or that.

He said, “So I began making more stuff up. Then I panicked and they took my wife away, separated me from her.”

FBI was notified after suspicions that he might have been working for terrorists who wanted to invade the Jewish community. Hezbollah’s headquarters are in southern Lebanon. 

‘”When an FBI agent visited my home, I told him: Sir, I have given you permission to listen to all my calls. However, I’m not affiliated with any organization.”

Hawila was in fact from the southern Lebanon town of Tyre and was born into a Shi'ite Muslim household. He is pictured before he 'became Jewish' and moved to the U.S.

Hawila, in reality, was from Tyre in southern Lebanon and was raised into a Shiite Muslim family. The photo is taken before Hawila ‘became Jewish and moved to America. 

FBI has so far not found any evidence that he participated in terrorist-related activities, or falsified documents. 

Hawila says that he did not mean to harm his wife Sally. However, the couple are currently living apart. 

“If she wishes to give me another chance, she will. If she does not want to, then I can still forgive her. Hawila stated that she wanted her to be aware of the fact that she is my love.

Rabbi Yossi Lazaroff of the Jewish Student Center at Texas A&M University where Hawila used to spend time while on campus, has now distanced himself over the entire episode, despite attending his religious Jewish wedding. 

In a statement Rabbi Lazaroff said that this was a sad case where a young, confused person formed a relationship with an adult from the Syrian Jewish community. She was shocked to learn after their marriage that he wasn’t Jewish.

The officiating Rabbi asked a Chabad rabbi from Texas to take the groom to the Chupah, since he didn’t have any relatives in Texas. 

We were all clearly misled by his identity. This woman and her family are in our thoughts and prayers.