A 20-year-old Ohio man, Aaron Daniels accused of trying to join the Islamic State has been arrested boarding a flight as he allegedly attempted to flee to Libya.
He was taken into custody at John Glenn Columbus International Airport in Ohio on Monday morning after a month-long investigation by federal authorities.
Daniels, who was allegedly linked to an ISIS recruiter once referred to as the ‘Beast of Islam’, bought plane tickets on Saturday to travel to Houston and then to Trinidad and Tobago.
He had allegedly told an undercover informant about his interest in traveling overseas to commit jihad and that he planned to go to Libya.
The complaint says Daniels wired $250 in January to a Beirut intermediary for now-deceased Islamic State recruiter and attacks planner Abu Isa Al-Amriki.
Daniels, who went by the aliases Harun Muhammad and Abu Yusuf, had allegedly expressed interest in traveling to Afghanistan and Syria to wage war before settling on Libya, DailyMail.com reports.
In June, Daniels told the undercover informant he wanted to go to Islamic State territory in Libya ‘so I could support the jihad there,’ according to the complaint.
However, his mother came to his defence with a Facebook post, ‘Aaron is not a violent young man, nor has ever held any malice in his heart. He, unfortunately, has connected with the wrong people. All he has ever shared with me is his desire to study abroad in Saudi Arabia to become a scholar in Islam,’
‘He linked up with a Masjid in our neighborhood and attended regularly. He told me that all he needed were two references from other attendees at the Masjid in order to be accepted abroad to study. He never received those from the Masjid.
‘My thoughts is this, since he never received those references, he connected with someone online claiming to help him with this and now he is in custody being accused of attempting to join a terrorist group.’ She said.
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