Washington – A Muslim imam was arrested in Jamaica on Friday on charges of working with ISIS and recruiting members for the terrorist group. He was later indicted on the charges.
Imam Abdullah al-Faisal, 53, was arrested after cooperation between the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and security forces in Jamaica.
New York authorities will seek to have him extradited to face charges in Manhattan Supreme Court, according to a US law enforcement source.
Born Trevor William Forrest in St. James, Jamaica, Faisal was previously convicted in the United Kingdom in 2003 of soliciting murder and imprisoned. He was deported to Jamaica in 2007 after being released, reported Reuters.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said Friday that Faisal used lectures, a website and videos to incite followers to join ISIS.
“A charismatic leader, the defendant’s rhetoric has been cited by several convicted or suspected terrorists in New York, London, and beyond,” Vance said in a statement.
Prosecutors said that beginning in December 2016, Faisal began communicating remotely from Jamaica with an undercover New York Police Department officer. He urged the officer to view ISIS propaganda materials online, and offered to help him travel to the Middle East to fight for the organization, prosecutors said.
NYPD members ultimately did travel to the Middle East, and once they arrived, Faisal put them in touch with a contact in Raqqa, Syria, according to prosecutors.