U.S. citizen Mohamed Elshinawy allegedly made a fake ad for computer printers on Ebay as a ruse to receive payments from Islamic State operatives abroad, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Elshinawy was arrested in December 2015 on charges of attempting to provide material support for ISIS. “This case demonstrates how terrorists exploit modern technology to inculcate sympathizers and build hidden networks, but federal agents and prosecutors are working tirelessly and using every available lawful tool to disrupt their evil schemes,” then U.S. Attorney Rod Rosenstein said at the time, hinting at Elshinawy’s alleged use of Ebay.
Elshinawy reportedly received nearly $9,000 from ISIS operatives including multiple payments via Paypal. “A review of PayPal records indicates that Elshinawy allegedly concealed at least $3,500 of $7,700 that he received from ISIL operatives through his PayPal account between March and June 2015,” the Justice Department noted in an affidavit.
An FBI affidavit reviewed by TheWSJ revealed a “global network” of ISIS schemes using online payment systems to funnel its finances to terror operatives. A Bangladeshi British resident known as Siful Sujan directed the network until late 2015.
Sujan used his international technology company headquartered in the U.K. to fund ISIS operatives like Elshinawy. He is thought to have been connected with now-deceased ISIS operative Junaid Hussain, who similarly inspired would-be Jihadi’s in the U.S. Sujan was killed in a U.S. drone strike in Dec. 2015.
“Now that he’s dead, ISIL has lost a key link between networks,” then Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman Col. Steve Warren said of Sujan at the time.
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