NEW YORK – the US authorities are taking the unusual step of seeking clemency for a Bengali immigrants who are allowed to go to Syria to support the Islamic State of the group, says he deserves credit for the fact that a change of heart and the giving of the FBI, timely intelligence about the terror and threats.
The New York City man, who only as “John Doe” for fear of retaliation, wept on Wednesday to a conviction in the federal court of the place where he called himself “an idiot” for the support of the militant group, ” he says quickly disillusioned him.
“I made the biggest mistake of my life,” the 29-year-old man told U. S. District Judge Jack Weinstein. “I was stupid and lost, and found myself in deep danger.”
The judge delayed until Thursday a decision on whether to throw him in prison or put him under the supervision release.
Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn have sought long sentences in several cases involving radicalized, would-be Islamic State recruits that were thwarted before they could fight for the group abroad, the plot of an attack on AMERICAN soil. The man’s case differs, because he succeeded in the connection IS for a number of months in 2014 and the gaining of access to confidential information, such as the group tried to establish a self-styled “caliphate” that is a threat to the U.S. at home and abroad.
He began to talk “within hours” of sneaking away from a camp in Syria, making him “uniquely situated to inform the government (of the group) strategies, tactics, techniques, procedures, personnel, and logistics operations,” prosecutors said. Once back in the united states, he secretly pleaded guilty to providing material aid to a terrorist organization as part of a cooperation agreement.
Details of the man’s odyssey is officially kept under wraps until this week, when prosecutors unsealed court papers in advance of the sentencing.
The newspapers say the man had a boring upbringing in a Muslim household, but grew despondent when his pregnant sister died from a sudden illness. He eventually became immersed in Islam and left the university.
“I think it was his way of grieving,” his sister said in court without the disclosure of his name. “He was withdrawn. . We stopped speaking.”
Online consumption of propaganda was highlighted by the FBI, who warns him not to continue a relationship with the extremists, the newspapers say. Instead, he went to Turkey and via social media for guidance, his way in IS-controlled territory.
“He disappeared one morning and we had no idea where he was going,” the sister said.
He was soon confronted with the brutality of the organization and its dubious religious statements, which were not consistent with the defendant’s understanding of his faith,” court papers say.
The man avoided combat duty by convincing recruiters he had the technical skills that “he had only seen in movies,” the papers say. So he, instead, was given logistical and supporting roles until he secretly sent a message to the FBI and offers his help, then risked crossing the Syrian border with documents.
“As he had discovered, he would have been summarily executed,” his attorney, Gary Villanueva, said in the court.
Together with his cooperation, authorities have credited the man with participation in a private intervention “with a young man who was misled” by propaganda. He also helped in the development of a community terrorism prevention program, they say.
On Wednesday, he told the judge he had earned a financial degree from a public university, while under the protective custody. At the same time, he is “keeping a low profile for the safety of myself and my family,” he said.
He is thankful, he said, for the chance to work against the most brutal organization on earth.”