His Muslim name – Harun Ash-Shababi – seems to have been scrubbed from all articles on his guilty plea. Source: Suffolk man pleads guilty to terrorism related charge | WTKR.com
SUFFOLK, Va. – A Suffolk man pleaded guilty Wednesday to a terrorism charge he received for trying to provide support to ISIS.
Lionel Williams pleaded guilty to a charge of attempting to aid a foreign terrorism organization.
Williams made the plea during a court hearing on Wednesday morning.
FBI agents arrested Williams at his home last December. Newly released court documents detail the efforts Williams made to send ISIS money, including dressing up in all black with a head scarf to purchase a $200 prepaid Visa gift card at a Walgreens in Suffolk. Williams believed the money was going to help ISIS kill people.
When Williams found out FBI agents were watching him, he told his then girlfriend, “Anyway I want them to know that if I catch them scopin’ my house out again, I’m gonna cut his head off; just so they know.” The conversations are detailed in a Statement of Facts that Williams signed, acknowledging they are true.
After his arrest, Williams reiterated that he stands with ISIS and that he believed he was part of the “holy war.” FBI agents also interviewed a woman in Brazil, with whom Williams had an online relationship. She told agents she didn’t know the exact details of Williams’ plan, but that he told her he would “go at police with a gun and that he would die as a martyr in the process.” She said his plan was to cause a serious incident that would require military assistance.
As part of the plea agreement, both sides agreed to a 20-year sentence, but the judge said she wants to review the case before accepting it.
From the DOJ press release: Suffolk Man Pleads Guilty to Terrorism Charges
According to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement, Lionel Williams, 27, attempted to send money to a person he believed was an ISIS financier on two occasions, believing the money would be used to kill. In court documents, Williams admitted his interest in ISIS began in 2014. On Dec. 3, 2015, the day after the San Bernardino terrorist attack, he bought an AK-47 assault rifle. In March 2016, he publicly declared his support for ISIS on social media, described his hope that ISIS would take over the United States, and stated he would decapitate any law enforcement agents he caught surveilling him. After donating money to an individual he believed to be an ISIS financier – but was actually a persona adopted by an FBI employee – Williams was told his donation had helped purchase a rocket-propelled grenade. He responded with an Arabic phrase meaning, “Praise be to Allah, and Allah is the Greatest.” Later in 2016, Williams began discussing plans for a martyrdom operation with a woman living outside the United States, asked an FBI confidential source to send him specific types of AK-47 ammunition, and told an FBI employee that his plan was for a “local” operation. Williams was arrested and charged shortly thereafter. After his arrest, he told agents he supported ISIS and believed he was part of a “holy war.”
As part of the plea agreement, Williams agreed that he will receive the statutory maximum of 20 years in prison when sentenced on December 20.
Who is the judge and what exactly is she reviewing? The previous judge was a male, mentioned in this post: Virginia: Muslim convert arrested for ISIS support; wanted local attack
He noted that Williams’ uncle, who lived on the same property as Williams, works at Norfolk Naval Shipyard and has a security clearance.