Three Kenyan-born residents of Lansing, Michigan were arrested Monday and charged with conspiracy to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) in Somalia.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Michigan charged all three in a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The charge is punishable by up to 20 years in federal prison.
Muse Abdikadir Muse (Muse Muse) was arrested by members of the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF) at the Gerald R. Ford Airport in Grand Rapids, Michigan, after checking in for a multi-connecting flight destined for Mogadishu, Somalia.
Federal law enforcement arrested alleged coconspirators Mohamud Abdikadir Muse (Mohamud Muse), and Mohamed Salat Haji (Haji), shortly after.
All three defendants are naturalized U.S. citizens who were born in Kenya.
According to the complaint affidavit, which is viewable below, Muse Muse purchased airline tickets earlier in January to travel from Grand Rapids to Mogadishu, departing on Monday, January 21, 2019.
The complaint further alleged Haji and Mohamud Muse aided in the purchase of the ticket and drove Muse Muse to the Grand Rapids airport, knowing full-well the true purpose of the travel was for Muse Muse to join and fight for ISIS.
A complaint asserts that all three defendants pledged allegiance to ISIS through videos they recorded themselves.
In one such video, Muse Muse and Haji allegedly discussed their desire to join ISIS, to kill non-believers, and even to potentially use a car for a martyrdom operation to run down non-believers in the U.S. if they could not travel overseas to fight for ISIS.
Following the arrests, federal agents executed search warrants at a residence shared by Mohamud Muse and Muse Muse.
Assistant Attorney General for National Security John C. Demers, Andrew B. Birge, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Michigan, and Tim Slater, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Detroit Field Division, announced the arrests.