FBI REPORT: A Prince George’s County man sought out American military personnel to Murder on behalf of the Islamic State
HYATTSVILLE, MD — A Hyattsville man who came to the United States from Bangladesh as a child is in federal custody on a charge that he tried to help the terrorist organization ISIS by planning to kill an American military member.
Nelash Mohamed Das, 24, was charged by federal criminal complaint Monday with attempting to provide material support and resources to ISIS or the Islamic State. Federal authorities say that for the past year, Das used social media to express his support for the Islamic State, including support for terrorist attacks in Paris, France, and San Bernardino, CA.
“Individuals intent on carrying out violence in the name of foreign terrorist organizations pose one of the most concerning threats that law enforcement faces today and stopping these offenders before they are able to act is our highest priority,” said Assistant Attorney General Carlin in a news release.
On Oct. 26, 2015, Das tweeted the name of an individual and the city where they lived, stating that the individual “aspires to kill Muslims.” Das knew that the individual hoped to become a member of the U.S. military. ISIS members and supporters have posted identifying information about U.S. military personnel in hopes that follower would carry out attacks against them, the FBI says.
The affidavit alleges that Das was advertising the individual’s identity and whereabouts in order to inspire violence against that individual.
On Jan. 30, 2016, Das reportedly tweeted a picture of an AK-47 assault rifle along with the message, “This is more than just a gun. This is a ticket to Jannah,” a reference to the Islamic concept of paradise.
According to the affidavit, Das attended classes at a firing range in Prince George’s County to practice firing weapons, and submitted his fingerprints to obtain a handgun permit.
Video courtesy of: WBAL-TV 11 Baltimore
In May 2016, Das met a someone working for the FBI whom he believed was also a supporter of ISIS. Das later told the unidentified source that he wanted to kill a particular military member who lived in Prince George’s County, and whose identifying information Das had obtained the prior year from a list posted online by ISIL. After that, he hoped to travel overseas for ISIS.
In a meeting on Sept. 11, 2016, Das confirmed that he was committed “100 percent” to conducting an attack and, “That’s like my goal in life,” according to court documents. In a meeting the following day, Das asked that ISIS pay him for future killings of U.S. military personnel, but added that he would do it for free, as well.
On Sept. 28, 2016, Das and the informant drove to a firearms store in Virginia, where Das purchased ammunition and was given bogus information on a target with the expectation that he would be paid $80,000 for the attack. Das was arrested at the scene of the planned attack two days later by FBI agents.
Das was ordered to be detained pending a detention hearing, which is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 6, in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt.
Das faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison if convicted.
According to the affidavit, Das was admitted to the U.S. in 1995 and is a legal permanent resident.