Three Minnesota men accused of plotting to travel to Syria and join ISIS were convicted Friday of conspiracy to murder overseas and other charges.
Guled Ali Omar, Abdirahman Yasin Daud, and Mohamed Abdihamid Farah all now face life in prison, the feds said.
“The evidence in this case made clear that the defendants made a deeply personal and deliberate decision back in 2014,” United States Attorney Andrew Luger said in a statement. “They wanted to fight for a brutal terrorist organization, kill innocent people and destroy their own families in the process.”
Omar, 21, Daud, 22, and Farah, 22, all Minneapolis residents, made “multiple attempts” to join ISIS, the feds said in a statement.
The trio was also convicted of other counts, including conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization and attempting to provide such support. Daud was found not guilty on one count of perjury.
The three men were part of a group of six suspected ISIS sympathizers who were busted by federal investigators in April 2015.
Daud, who is a Somali citizen and a lawful permanent U.S. resident, was nabbed in San Diego. So was Farah, who is a U.S. citizen.
The two drove to California intending to buy fake passports, cross the border into Mexico, and fly from there to Syria.
“Unbeknownst to them, the individual from whom they purchased the fake passports was a law enforcement officer,” the federal officials said.
Omar and three others — Zacharia Yusuf Abdurahman, Adnan Abdihamid Farah and Hanad Mustafe Musse — were arrested in Minneapolis.
In all, 10 Minnesota residents have been charged with conspiracy to provide material support to ISIS. Six pleaded guilty before the trial. And just one of them, identified by federal investigators as 22-year-old Abdi Nur, actually joined ISIS in June 2014.
An FBI informant named Abdirahman Bashir told the court he plotted along with the defendants to join ISIS and secretly taped conversations with his unsuspecting co-conspirators.
The Somali immigrant community in Minnesota has long been targeted by recruiters from ISIS and other Islamic terrorist groups like the Somalia-based al-Shabab, federal officials have said.