The U.S. Department of Justice on Friday charged a Brooklyn man who joined ISIS with providing and attempting to provide material support to a designated terrorist organization.
Ruslan Maratovich Asainov, a naturalized American citizen born in Kazakhstan, was recently transferred into FBI custody after being detained in Syria by the Syrian Democratic Forces, according to a Friday statement from the Justice Department.
“The defendant … turned his back on the country that took him in and joined ISIS, serving its violent ends in Syria and attempting to recruit others to its cause,” U.S. Attorney Donoghue said in a statement, according to the DOJ. (RELATED: ISIS Member Who Applied For Refugee Status Has Been Arrested On Murder Charges In California)
1) “The defendant, a naturalized U.S. citizen residing in Brooklyn, turned his back on the country that took him in and joined ISIS, serving its violent ends in Syria and attempting to recruit others to its cause,” stated United States Attorney Donoghue…
— US Attorney EDNY (@EDNYnews) July 19, 2019
“Our counterterrorism prosecutors and law enforcement partners will continue working relentlessly to hold accountable those like the defendant who have supported ISIS’s violent agenda,” he continued.
Donoghue also said the FBI hopes “countries around the world, including our European allies and partners, will likewise repatriate and prosecute their own citizens for traveling to support ISIS.”
“Some go to great lengths to join groups, such as ISIS, to fight on behalf of terrorist ideologies and to recruit others to travel in support of their misguided principles,” FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge of the Counterterrorism Division William F. Sweeney said.
“As we allege today, Asainov left this country to do just that. He turned his back on the ideals we value, and he’ll now be made to face our justice system head-on.” (UN Report: There Are Still Up To 30,000 ISIS Fighters Scattered Across Iraq And Syria)
Asainov traveled from the United States to Turkey in 2013 and then to Syria. He became an ISIS sniper and eventually an “emir,” or someone who teaches other members of the terrorist organization how to use weapons. He also attempted to recruit another U.S. citizen to join ISIS while he was residing in Syria.
Asainov reportedly sent a message to one associate saying ISIS is “the worst terrorist organization in the world that has ever existed” and he wished to die on the battlefield.
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