Virginia: Muslim honor student pleads guilty to assisting ISIS

via Virginia honor student pleads guilty to assisting ISIL.

WASHINGTON — A Virginia honor student pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to charges that he supported the Islamic State’s recruitment campaign in the U.S. The 17-year-old, one of the youngest Americans to face such terrorism-related charges, is the latest example of the growing influence of ISIL among youth in America.

Ali Shukri Amin acknowledged assisting in the radicalization of an 18-year-old friend, Reza Niknejad and aiding Niknejad’s travel overseas earlier this year to join ISIL’s ranks in Syria.

Amin also established a Twitter account, amassing thousands of followers, used to instruct prospective jihadis on how to mask financial contributions to ISIL by using the virtual currency Bitcoin, according to court documents.

Assistant Attorney General John Carlin, who oversees the Justice Department’s National Security Division, said the case underscores ISIL’s continuing social media effort to draw U.S. sympathizers to its cause, snagging ever-younger recruits.

“This case serves as a wake-up call that ISIL’s propaganda and recruitment materials are in your communities and being viewed by your youth,” Carlin said. “This challenge requires parental and community awareness and action to confront and deter this threat wherever it surfaces.”

In court documents outlining Amin’s admitted activities, prosecutors said Amin used his Twitter account, webpage and pro-ISIL blog to “proselytize his radical Islamic ideology, justify and defend ISIL’s violent practices and to provide advice on topics such as jihadists travel to fight with ISIL.”

“On his blog,” prosecutors said, “the defendant authored a series of highly technical articles targeted at aspiring jihadists and ISIL supporters detailing the use of security measures in online communications to include the use of encryption and anonymity software.”

Perhaps the most consequential of Amin’s actions centered on the assistance he provided to Niknejad. Starting in September, according to court documents, Amin “began an effort to convert (Niknejad) to a radical form of Islam.”

By December, Amin had arranged an overseas contact to provide travel instructions for his friend. The next month, Niknejad boarded a Turkish Airlines flight to begin a journey that ended with his successful crossing into Syria.

After Niknejad’s departure, Amin acknowledged delivering a letter to his friend’s family, which indicated that Niknejad, who also has been charged with terror support, “did not plan to see his family again.”

Before leaving, Niknejad had told his family he was embarking on a “camping trip.”

Amin’s attorney, Joseph Flood, said the actions of his client, a devout Muslim, were part of a “sincere belief” that the current Syrian regime had committed atrocities. At the same time, Flood said, Amin’s behavior is “a reflection of his … immaturity, social isolation and frustration at the ineffectiveness of non-violent means for opposing a criminal regime.”

“Mr. Amin has taken responsibility as an adult for his actions as a child,” the attorney said in a written statement.

Flood described his young client as a committed student and a volunteer in his Manassas, Va.-area community whose behavior “does not reflect his values or his true character.”

Amin, Flood said, had been planning to enter college in the fall to pursue academic interests that included science, technology and robotics.

“Mr. Amin deeply regrets having allowed himself and his faith to become entangled in criminal offenses and causing his family and community pain,” Flood said, adding that his client has been cooperating with federal investigators.

Amin faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison. A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for Aug. 28.

 

Virginia: Muslim woman gets 4 1/2 years for lying to Feds about ISIS activities

isis-girl

via Glen Allen woman goes to prison after lying about ISIS Facebook posts | WTVR.com. h/t Atlas

RICHMOND, Va. – Heather Elizabeth Coffman, 29, of Glen Allen, Virginia, was sentenced to 54 months in prison during a Monday morning hearing in federal court in downtown Richmond. Coffman’s sentencing came after she pleaded guilty to lying to FBI agents about Facebook posts and conversations she had about the terror group ISIS.

“Coffman admitted that beginning prior to June 2014 and continuing up through November 2014, she used several Facebook accounts under different names showing her support for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant’s (ISIL, referred to as ISIS by the defendant and within the case) cause,” according to the statement of facts filed with the plea agreement.

Prosecutors said Coffman’s social media accounts revealed her “romantic involvement” with someone [N.A.] living outside of the United States.

In the months leading up to September 2014, Coffman and N.A. communicated almost daily via Facebook and other communications platforms. During their conversations, Coffman and N.A. explored options for N.A. to travel to Syria in order to fight for ISIS and die a “Shaheed,” referring to a martyr who dies for “jihad.”

Coffman cultivated online relationships with individuals she believed were ISIS facilitators operating in Syria. She put N.A. in contact with a facilitator to assist with his travel and eventual training with ISIS (with the Coffman’s financial assistance for travel) before he was to cross the border into Syria to fight with ISIS. This plan was moving forward when the couple’s relationship deteriorated in early September 2014, and N.A. backed out of the plans.

Coffman later communicated with others about her disappointment and expressed how she wished that the plan had succeeded.

According to the plea documents, Coffman admitted that she lied during the ongoing investigation on Nov. 13, 2014, when she told FBI agents that she did not know whether N.A. had talked to anybody else who supported ISIS, and that she did not know anybody N.A. had talked to when, as Coffman well knew, she had previously put N.A. in contact with ISIS fighters and N.A., in turn, had communicated with them to facilitate N.A.’s travel to Turkey to join ISIS.

Coffman faced a maximum of eight years in federal prison. After she is released from prison, Coffman will be under three years of supervised release.


More:  Virginia woman accused of supporting ISIS enters plea

The agent wrote that Coffman talked about making arrangements for a man she identified as her husband to train and fight with the Islamic State group in Syria. Coffman said the man, who is not named in court papers, backed out when the couple split up.

According to the criminal complaint, Coffman explained her frustration to the agent, saying, “I set him up with the brothers who gave him a contact name and number in Turkey to get him across the border when it was time for training,” she said, according to CBS News affiliate WTVR.

“I spoke to another brother about it who said he was shocked he is sitting around waiting in Macedonia and he is going to call the emir and fix that and get him to Turkey,” she continued. “But my account was disabled so I couldn’t follow through with that. But I think he was just joking us about going.”

Coffman offered to use her contacts with the group to make similar arrangements for the FBI agent and a fictitious friend, the affidavit said. The agent told Coffman that his friend wanted to fight with the terrorist group and become a “shaheed,” or martyr.

According to the charges, she posted an image with the captions “We are all ISIS, Islamic State of Iraq and Sham” on one of the Facebook accounts.

Virginia: Convicted South Park terror wannabe wanted baby to be jihadi too

We knew this Muslim rat had used his infant son as a human shield on his way to wage jihad. But after he was convicted and his wife deported, they still wanted to raise the poor baby to be a jihadi. The sanity of the judge and the grandparents have so far prevailed.

via Court hears appeal in terror-related custody dispute

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A lawyer for a radical Muslim convert imprisoned for supporting terrorism urged a federal appeals court Thursday to revive the man’s parental rights lawsuit, which a judge had dismissed as frivolous.

Jason LaFond told a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that Zachary Chesser’s complaint against his mother and FBI agents, while lengthy and complicated, was not fanciful and was supported by numerous documents.

The judge who dismissed the lawsuit “didn’t say whether it was factually or legally frivolous, but it was neither,” LaFond said.

Court papers show that Chesser attempted to join the al-Shabab terrorist group in Somalia, taking his baby with him to the airport in an attempt to look less suspicious.

It didn’t work. Chesser, who had attracted law enforcement attention after posting threats against the creators of “South Park” for cartoons he felt insulted the prophet Muhammad, was arrested and pleaded guilty in 2010 to attempting to support terrorist groups and threatening violence online. He was sentenced to 25 years in prison.

His wife – Proscovia Nzabanita, the daughter of a Ugandan diplomat – was forced to leave the U.S. for lying to investigators about her husband’s activities.

Chesser’s mother, Barbara Chesser, won custody of the couple’s baby and is raising him with her partner. The young couple “opposed placing the young boy with his grandparents, who did not share Chesser and his wife’s conservative Islamic beliefs,” LaFond wrote in his client’s appeal.

Keep in mind this is the same Muslim dog who Encourages Parents to Teach Children about Jihad.

The lawsuit says FBI agents monitoring his prison conversations tipped off Barbara Chesser, a senior lawyer in the Office of the Attorney General in the District of Columbia, that the couple was making plans with a friend to take the boy to Jordan to be raised by Nzabanita. Soon after, a judge awarded custody of the boy to Barbara Chesser.

Interesting, his mother is a a senior lawyer in the Office of the Attorney General in the District of Columbia.

Zachary Chesser’s lawsuit seeks monetary damages, not custody. He says his privacy was invaded when FBI agents disclosed his plans to his mother.

Privacy? In taxpayer-funded prison?

U.S. Justice Department attorney Lowell Sturgill urged the appeals court to uphold U.S. District Judge Liam O’Grady’s decision, although he conceded that the judge should be required to explain his reasoning on the privacy issue.

The court typically rules several weeks after hearing arguments.

Virginia: Muslim teen arrested recruiting for Islamic State terror group

Just a few days ago, another Muslim teen, in Minnesota, pled guilty to joining ISIS.  via Teen accused of being ISIS recruiter

A 17-year-old Virginia student has been charged with helping recruit for ISIS, federal law enforcement officials said Wednesday.

The teen, whose name was not disclosed, was taken into custody last week, the officials said.

Prosecutors are seeking to charge him as an adult but currently have charged him as a juvenile, one of the law enforcement officials said.

The case remains under seal. It was first reported by The Washington Post on Wednesday.

The Post, citing officials and neighbors, reported that investigators spent more than a month watching the teen and his home before he was arrested.

The teen, who lives in a Virginia suburb of Washington, is accused of helping a slightly older adult travel to Syria. The adult is believed to have joined ISIS there, a separate law enforcement official said.

The teen is also accused of distributing ISIS messages to a network of contacts, one of the officials said.

Former boss: He didn’t seem radical

The teen is an “intelligent kid,” a man who hired him to write for a digital currency news website said Wednesday evening. Dustin O’Bryant, the editor of the website Coin Brief from Alabama, said: “He did not come across as radical in any way.”

The teen wrote freelance articles for the website for seven months last year. He was told not to bring religion into his writing, O’Bryant said, adding he had noticed the young man had written online posts about his faith. The teen complied, he said.

The website editor said he was “extremely, extremely surprised” to learn of the arrest from reporters calling him. He hadn’t spoken to the teen since February, when the young man said he was dealing with personal matters but wanted to start writing for the website again at some point this year.

Give me two weeks to three months, the boy told him.

O’Bryant said he is shocked by the charge.

“I hope there’s some sort of misunderstanding here, and that he didn’t know what he was doing,” he said.

He added that he didn’t realize the teen was in high school because he had college courses on his resume.

Virginia: Muslim cabbie on FBI Most Wanted Terrorist list detained in Somalia

via Virginia cabbie on FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list detained in Somalia – The Washington Post.

A Northern Virginia man who fled the United States more than two years ago and was recently placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list is in the custody of the Somali government, U.S. officials said.

Liban Haji Mohamed, 29, was detained shortly after prosecutors unsealed a warrant for his arrest and the FBI added him to the wanted list in late January. It is unclear how he was taken into custody or how soon he could be brought back to the United States.

The former cabdriver is charged with providing material support and resources to al-Shabab, a U.S.-designated terrorist organization allied with al-Qaeda. He is suspected of having an operational role in al-Shabab and of trying to recruit people to join the group.

When FBI officials announced his inclusion on the most-wanted list, they said Mohamed was “an asset to his terrorist associates who might plot attacks on U.S. soil.” Officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation, noted that he had detailed knowledge of potential targets in Washington.

Officials said efforts were being made to bring Mohamed back to Virginia, though there are significant logistical and diplomatic challenges. The United States does not have an extradition treaty with Somalia.

U.S. law enforcement had been attempting to track Mohamed, a naturalized U.S. citizen, before he slipped out of the country and into Mexico on July 12, 2012. The case had frustrated FBI agents who strongly believed Mohamed should have been charged with material support of terrorism while he was living in Fairfax County.

Some federal prosecutors in the Eastern District of Virginia were willing to do so, though they were overruled by others at the Justice Department, officials said.


In other words, Eric Holder overruled. He has turned the Justice Dept. into an enemy of the American people but the best friend any real terrorist could have.

 

California: Muslim CEO arrested, sent pornographic videos to 9- and 10-year-old Virginia boys

via CEO of Irvine company facing child sex charges | abc7.com.

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) — A CEO of an Irvine company is facing child sex charges, and investigators say they’re looking for other possible victims.

Prosecutors allege Qayed Shareef, 39, pretended to be a teenage boy named Jeremy Stevens when he used an app called Tango to contact a 9- and 10-year-old boy, two brothers in Virginia.

“He basically just started it off, ‘Hey what’s your age?’ And within an hour, took it sexual,” said prosecutor Vanessa Woods. “He sent photos and videos of himself, as well as pornographic videos.”

Authorities say the 39-year-old then gave instructions to the boys to record each other and to him send the photos and videos.

“He was very specifically asking them to do various sexual positions, acts, show sexual body parts,” Woods said.

Prosecutors say the crimes allegedly started Christmas Day 2013 and lasted four days. Investigators discovered 30 different videos of sex acts after being contacted by the boy’s mother.

Shareef is married, has a child and lives in Aliso Viejo. He is the CEO of Adaptive Media and describes himself online as an “experienced digital advertising executive.”

His arrest this week came after a year of investigation.

Lt. Jeff Hallock of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department said Shareef likely had more knowledge on how to evade law enforcement because he “has an expertise in computers and IP addresses and Internet.”

Shareef, who has pleaded not guilty, is expected to return to court on March 27. He is being held on $2 million bail.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the Orange County District Attorney’s Office at (714) 347-8794.

 h/t and more via RRW:

Informative video on the case, showing the perpetrator being interviewed for a business news segment.  Irvine CEO Accused Of Trading Sex Videos With Boys In Virginia.  (Note, Shareef was not caught in a “sting” operation.)
http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2015/01/23/irvine-ceo-accused-of-trading-sex-videos-with-boys-in-virginia/

CEO of Irvine company facing child sex charges – with video.
http://abc7.com/news/ceo-of-irvine-company-facing-child-sex-charges/488811/

Somali Muslim cabbie from Northern Virginistan added to FBI Most Wanted Terrorist list (video)

$50,000 if you help find Haji Mohamed. via FBI.gov

LibanHajiMohamed_postergrab

View poster in English | In Somali | In Arabic

 New Most Wanted Terrorist
Naturalized U.S. Citizen Born in Somalia Added to FBI List

01/29/15

Liban Haji Mohamed, a naturalized U.S. citizen born in Somalia, has been named to the FBI’s list of Most Wanted Terrorists, and a reward of up to $50,000 is being offered for information leading to his arrest and conviction. Mohamed is charged with providing material support and resources to al Qaeda and al Shabaab, a Somali-based terrorist organization.

“Al Shabaab has claimed responsibility for many bombings in Somalia and Uganda and the 2013 attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya,” said Carl Ghattas, special agent in charge of the Counterterrorism Division at the FBI’s Washington Field Office. “Liban Mohamed is believed to have left the U.S. with the intent to join al Shabaab in East Africa. We believe he is currently there operating on behalf of that terrorist organization.”

Traveling with his U.S. passport, Mohamed is thought to have left the United States on or about July 5, 2012. Before his departure, the 29-year-old lived in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, D.C., where he worked as a cab driver.

“While living in Northern Virginia, Mohamed was a recruiter and radicalizer for al Shabaab, which historically has targeted Westerners to go to Somalia and fight for them,” Ghattas said. “Not only did Mohamed choose to go to Somalia and fight with al Shabaab, he took a prominent role in trying to recruit people and have them train with weapons.”

Shortly after leaving the U.S, the international police organization Interpol issued a blue notice for Mohamed to collect additional information about his identity, location, and activities. On August 15, 2014, Interpol issued a red notice to seek him as a wanted fugitive.

Mohamed speaks English, Somali, and Arabic. He is black, 6 feet tall, weighs about 194 pounds, and has black hair and brown eyes. He could be using aliases including Abu Ayrow, Shirwa, Shirwac, Qatiluhum, and Qatil. Mohamed was a close associate of convicted terrorist Zachary Chesser, who was sentenced in 2011 to 25 years in prison for attempting to provide material support to al Shabaab.

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