* United States v. Hasbrajami (E.D.N.Y. Sep. 9, 2011) (another material support indictment)
The indictment and detention memo in this case are attached. In this one, the government alleges that an Albanian citizen/legal US resident living in New York planned to travel to the FATA in hopes of joining a group engaged in military operations there (one that claimed to have attacked Americans in the past). It is not clear at this point what group that might have been. I note that the indictment for the moment charges actual provision of material support in connection with a section 956(a) murder conspiracy, as well as attempted provision of support. There is no charge under 2339B or 2339D relating to specifically designated groups, suggesting either that in this instance the group is not a designated one or, perhaps more likely, it’s just too hard to say for sure which group(s) might be involved. In any event, from the press release:
NEW YORK – An indictment was unsealed in federal court in Brooklyn N.Y., this morning charging Agron Hasbajrami, 27, a legal U.S. resident and Albanian citizen living in New York City, with providing material support to terrorists.Hasbajrami is scheduled to be arraigned later today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom, at the U.S. Courthouse, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn. The case has been assigned to U.S. District Judge John Gleeson.
According to the indictment and a detention motion filed by the government, Hasbajrami devised a plan to travel to the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan (the FATA) for the purpose of joining a radical jihadist fighting group in Pakistan. In pursuing this goal, Hasbajrami exchanged email messages with a contact in Pakistan who advised Hasbajrami that the contact’s fighting group was engaged in violent military operations and had killed American troops. Hasbajrami told his contact that he wished to travel abroad to “marry with the girls in paradise,” using jihadist rhetoric to describe his desire to die as a martyr.
According to the government’s court filings, Hasbajrami sent more than $1,000 to Pakistan to support his contact’s terrorist efforts. When asked to collect money from fellow Muslims for the terrorist cause, Hasbajrami reported that fundraising was difficult in New York because his fellow Muslims became apprehensive “when they hear it is for jihad.”
In August 2011, Hasbajrami purchased an airline ticket to travel to Turkey en route to Pakistan, but cancelled it. Hasbajrami then purchased another airline ticket to travel to Turkey on Sept. 6, 2011. He was arrested at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, N.Y., when he arrived to board his flight to Turkey carrying a tent, boots and cold-weather gear. A search of Hasbajrami’s residence revealed, among other items, a note reading “Do not wait for invasion, the time is martyrdom time.”
If convicted of providing material support to terrorists, Hasbajrami faces a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison.