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Brooklyn man who ‘bought a one-way ticket out of JFK to join ISIS’ is charged by US prosecutors 


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A New York man who is said to have booked a one-way ticket from JFK to Syria to go and fight for ISIS has been charged by federal authorities for supporting the terrorist organisation, prosecutors revealed Friday.

Ruslan Maratovich Asainov, a 42-year-old Kazakhstan-born US citizen, was charged with providing material support ISIS, including weapons training to terrorist soldiers and attempting to recruit personnel.

Asainov left his Brooklyn home – where he has lived since 1998 – to travel from JFK to Istanbul, Turkey, on December 25 2013.

From there, he traveled into Syria and allegedly enrolled to join ISIS as a fighter. 

A New York man who is said to have booked a one-way ticket from JFK to Syria to go and fight for ISIS has been charged by federal authorities for supporting the terrorist organisation, prosecutors revealed Friday.

He said to have quickly risen through the ranks serving as a sniper, before being promoted to an ’emir’, where he was given the responsibility of training new recruits, a newly unsealed criminal complaint claims. 

‘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 Richard Donoghue for the Eastern District of New York.

‘Our counter-terrorism prosecutors and law enforcement partners will continue working relentlessly to hold accountable those like the defendant who have supported ISIS’s violent agenda.’

Information supplied by a confidential informant showed that in communications with Asainov between August 2014 and March 2015, the accused said that since joining ISIS his ‘faith in Islam had been renewed’.

In March 2015, Asainov asked the informant to send him approximately $2,800 so that he could purchase a scope for his rifle.

Honoring the request, Asainov then sent photos of himself holding a ‘large-caliber assault rifle, fitted with a scope’, to the informant, showing off his purchase.

The informant, also a resident of the US, said that Asainov attempted to recruit him – and his family – to join him in Syria and fight for the terrorist group, promising him ‘a job, housing, food and a $50 stipend per month.’

‘Even grandmothers [are joining the group],’ Asainov reportedly urged. 

Asainov first left his Brooklyn home to travel to Istanbul, Turkey, in December 2013, where he entered Syria and allegedly enrolled to join ISIS as a fighter. There, he allegedly quickly rose through the ranks serving as a sniper, before turning his attention away from the front line to train new recruits

Asainov first left his Brooklyn home to travel to Istanbul, Turkey, in December 2013, where he entered Syria and allegedly enrolled to join ISIS as a fighter. There, he allegedly quickly rose through the ranks serving as a sniper, before turning his attention away from the front line to train new recruits

Speaking to a separate associate Asainov allegedly bragged that ISIS was the ‘worst terrorist organization in the world that has ever existed’ and said he hoped to one day die in battle. 

‘You will be f***ing scared for the rest of your life. We will get you. We will f***ing kill you. You heard of ISIS.

‘We will get you. You need to obey,’ he continued. ‘You need to be punished you f***ing [redacted]. We will find you and teach you how to behave.’ 

The messages were reportedly followed by a text to a friend, showing three dead fighter with instructions to ‘praise ISIS’.

Prosecutors said Asainov was detained by the Syrian Democratic Forces and was then transferred into FBI custody when he landed in JFK on Thursday. 

He said to have quickly risen through the ranks serving as a sniper, before being promoted to an 'emir', where he was given the responsibility of training new recruits, a newly unsealed criminal complaint claims.

He said to have quickly risen through the ranks serving as a sniper, before being promoted to an ’emir’, where he was given the responsibility of training new recruits, a newly unsealed criminal complaint claims.

The FBI say his arrest should serve to others around the world as a reminder of the consequences of travelling abroad to fight for terrorist militias. 

‘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,’ said FBI Assistant Director in Charge William Sweeney. 

‘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.’

Asainov appeared in Brooklyn federal in front of Magistrate Judge Steve Gold court on Friday afternoon. 

Prosecutors urged the judge to refuse Asainov bail, citing him to be a danger to the community and as having ‘substantial foreign ties’ – believing he would attempt to flee the country should he be temporarily released. 

The judge agreed, ordering Asainov to be held without bail until trial. 

Asainov was twice admonished twice by the Gold for not answering audibly when asked if he speaks English and understands his rights. 

Eventually, he did answer procedural questions with one-word answers, but only loudly enough for the judge to hear.

No plea was entered. He faces a maximum prison term of up to 20 years if convicted. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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