A man from western New York who allegedly followed the Islamic State, or ISIS, was arrested on Wednesday and charged with attempting to provide material support and personnel to the terrorist organization, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Arafat Nagi, 42, of Lackawanna, is accused of pledging allegiance to ISIS. He allegedly traveled to Turkey in 2012 and 2014 with the intent of meeting with ISIS members and purchasing military combat items.
The FBI was first alerted to him last August, when a resident of Lackawanna told agents that Nagi spoke about violent jihad to people in the community and often verbally argued with others about his jihadi beliefs. The resident reportedly told authorities that Nagi was mad about the killing of rebels in Yemen, which he blamed on the U.S., according to DOJ.
Nagi allegedly attempted to join ISIL and pledge allegiance to the terrorist organization. In two separate trips, Nagi traveled from Lackawanna to Turkey, the criminal complaint alleges, and he purchased items including military combat gear such as night vision goggles and black flags which are sometimes associated with Isil.
His first trip only lasted one day due to a medical issue but the second trip took place last July and lasted 10 days, U.S. Attorney Hochul said on Wednesday morning.
The complaint also alleges that the Lackawnna community said that Nagi espoused violent jihad and believed that he constituted a threat to those in the U.S.
Nagi could face 15 years in jail, a $250,000 fine, or both, if convicted of attempting to provide material support to Isil.