How The FBI Will Replace Osama Bin Laden On The Top Ten Most Wanted List

Now that Osama bin Laden is dead, who will replace him on the FBI’s Top Ten Most Wanted list?It’s not quite as simple as moving the No. 11 guy up a spot. A FBI official tells TPM that the process will take at least a few weeks. First, headquarters in Washington will reach out to the 56 FBI field officials around the country to take nominations.

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Two weeks later, a committee consisting of members of the FBI’s criminal division and public affairs office will meet to choose from the nominees.

Right now, the Top Ten Most Wanted list doesn’t included any al-Qaeda terrorists, but there is a separate Most Wanted Terrorists list that is down to nine terrorists with the death of bin Laden. It wasn’t clear whether another terrorist would be added to the list to bring the number back up to ten.

It’s also not quite clear what will happen to the $25 million dollar reward the federal government offered for information leading to the capture of bin Laden. The FBI referred questions to the State Department, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Late Update: Tanya Powell, a spokeswoman for the State Department told TPM in a statement:

“As Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton stated today (5/2), the Rewards for Justice program has obviously removed Usama bin Ladin from its active list of most wanted suspects because of his death.  Given the importance of confidentiality to the Rewards for Justice program, the State Department cannot comment at all on whether anyone has been nominated for a reward in this or any other case.”

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