Mohamed Rafik Naji will spend the next 20 years in prison for supporting ISIS and proposing a plan to use a garbage truck to crush people in Times Square.
State prosecutors have alleged that Naji repeatedly tried to join ISIS while in Yemen between March and September of 2015.
He wrote his girlfriend on March 25, 2016, about his attempts to enter the terrorist group’s territory, “It’s very hard to get in I’m on my 5 try its difficult mad po po military and ppl here very scared inshallah I make it m keep trying if not m have to go from somewhere else.”
One month later, according to court docs, Naji sent a selfie to that same girlfriend “in which he is wearing all black clothing, including a tactical vest in which a large knife handle is visible.” He then sent a video showing himself takin gunfire allegedly. He never joined ISIS and came back home.
Prosecutors also allege that Naji’s girlfriend sent him money several times while he was in Yemen.
A New York man who attempted to join the Islamic State was sentenced to 20 years in prison after he tried to provide material support to the terror group and boasted about how easy it would be to carry out an attack in Times Square.
Mohamed Rafik Naji, 40, became a “committed supporter” of ISIS in 2014, according to the Department of Justice. He traveled to Yemen in an attempt to join the terror group in March 2015, said federal authorities.
After returning to the United States in September 2015, Naji repeatedly distributed pro-ISIS messages on social media and advised an individual on how to travel overseas and join the terrorist group.
He had pledged an allegiance to ISIS, saying “I belong to the Islamic State only.” He also discussed the potential for carrying out a terrorist attack in Times Square, suggesting that a garbage truck could be driven into a crowd of pedestrians. [Washington Examiner]
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