Kenyan in US pleads guilty to supporting ISIS
A Kenyan man in United Sates on Tuesday pleaded guilty to supporting the Islamic State group (ISIS), according to court records.
Muse Abdikadir Muse, 21, pleaded guilty to one felony charge of conspiring to providing material support to a designated terrorist organisation during a Tuesday afternoon hearing in U.S. District Court, according to a plea agreement.
He originally pleaded not guilty in January 2019 after his arrest.
Muse, who is of Somali descent but was born in a refugee camp in Kenya, faces up to 20 years in prison, a Sh25 million ($250,000) fine, and lifetime probation once release from prison. He may also lose his US citizenship.
As part of the plea agreement, the government will dismiss two other charges — attempting to provide material support to a designated terrorist organisation and making a false statement in a passport application.
According to the State Journal, Muse also has agreed to cooperate with prosecutors and other investigators as they continue to proceed with charges against two other men.
The government says he was on his way to Mogadishu, Somalia and intended to join the Islamic State once he got there.
FBI investigators told federal prosecutors that they conducted surveillance on all three men on Facebook and using undercover agents, and that all three defendants pledged allegiance to ISIS in self-recorded videos.
His two relatives 24-year-old brother, Mohamud Abdikadir Muse, and their 27-year-old brother-in-law, Mohamed Salat Haji, were arrested in the airport terminal soon after.
Haji and Mohamud Muse had “aided in the purchase of the ticket and drove Muse Muse to the Grand Rapids airport, each knowing the true purpose of the travel was for Muse Muse to join and fight for ISIS,” federal authorities said.
The three men are naturalised US citizens who were born in Kenya, officials said.
The investigation began in April 2016 when agents found pro-ISIS writings on Mohamud Muse’s Facebook page and they were later contacted by an FBI agent, posing as an ISIS recruiter, according to the federal complaint.