American indicted for material support to ISIS
An American man from upstate New York was indicted on Tuesday for allegedly providing material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) by recruiting members for the militant group.
Mufid Elfgeeh, 30, of Rochester, was also accused of plotting to kill members of the U.S. military.
Federal prosecutors said Elfgeeh was indicted by a federal grand jury on three counts of attempting to provide material support and resources to the group, the Associated Press reported.
ISIS has been designated by the U.S. as a foreign terrorist organization. The FBI had reportedly been investigating Elfgeeh since early last year.
Elfgeeh, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Yemen, is believed to have attempted to assist three people in travelling to Syria to join the fight with ISIS on two separate occasions; in 2013 and early 2014. But two of these individuals had been cooperating with the FBI, prosecutors said.
He also sent $600 to an individual in Yemen for travel to Syria to join the ISIS fight.
“Disrupting and holding accountable those who seek to provide material support to foreign terrorist organizations is and shall remain a critical national security priority,” said Assistant Attorney General for National Security John Carlin, as quoted by the AP.
Elfgeeh first mentioned shooting military members to one of the informants in December 2013 when he reportedly said he wanted a gun and ammunition so he could put on a bullet-proof vest and go “around and start shooting,” the Department of Justice said.
Elfgeeh was arrested after one of the informants provided him in late May with two handguns — made inoperable by the FBI — as well as silencers and ammunition.
“As this case shows, our agents and prosecutors are using all the investigative tools at our disposal to break up these plots before individuals can put their plans into action,” Attorney General Eric Holder said in the statement carried by Agence France-Presse.
“We are focused on breaking up these activities on the front end, before supporters of ISIL can make good on plans to travel to the region or recruit sympathizers to this cause,” Holder added, using the term ISIL as a variant for the more widely-known “ISIS.”