Minnesota men convicted of plotting to join ′Islamic State′ in Syria | News | DW | 03.06.2016
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Minnesota men convicted of plotting to join 'Islamic State' in Syria

Three men from the US state of Minnesota have been convicted of planning to travel to Syria and join the so-called "Islamic State." The charge carries a possible life sentence.

Guled Ali Omar, 21 (pictured above), Abdirahman Yasin Daud and Mohamed Abdihamid Farah, both 22 years old (pictured below), were found guilty of a conspiracy to commit murder outside the US. The conviction carries a possibility of life imprisonment.

They were also found guilty of a conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization and attempting to provide such support. Daud was not found guilty on one count.

Abdirahman Yasin Daud Islamist

Abdirahman Yasin Daud

The court did not immediately set a sentencing date, with US District Judge Michael Davis saying he wanted to review the case and hear from the defendants.

According to state lawyers, the men were part of a group in Minnesota's Somali community who inspired people to join the so-called "Islamic State" (IS). Ten men from the group were accused of the conspiracy. Six pleaded guilty while a seventh was believed to be in Syria.

Mohamed Abdihamid Farah Islamist

Mohamed Abdihamid Farah

Prosecutors said they based their case on recordings made by a friend of the group. He was paid $119,000 (104,000 euros), lawyers told the court. But defense lawyers dismissed the recordings as youthful bluster. The convicted men's friends and families said they were caught in the IS' social media campaign.

Law enforcement agencies in Minnesota say around a dozen young men and women have left the state to join the "IS" in Syria. Around 22 men have left the US to join the terror group al-Shabab in Somalia.

mg/jr (AP, Reuters)

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