Edmonton man pleads guilty in U.S. court to funding terrorist activities in Syria

An Edmonton man pleaded guilty Friday in a U.S. federal court to providing material support to ISIS terrorists in Syria.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Abdullahi Ahmed Abdullahi admitted to providing money to his four cousins as well as a San Diego man to support their terrorist activities in Syria. He agreed to a prison sentence of 20 years.

Officials say Abdullahi conspired with Douglas McCain, the first known American who died fighting for the Islamic State, and others in the U.S. and Canada “to provide support to terrorists engaged in violent activities in Syria.”

They say Abdullahi admitted to robbing an Edmonton jewelry store in January 2014 to finance the travel of McCain and others, as well as wiring money to third-party intermediaries in Gaziantep, Turkey to support terrorist activities in Syria.

Abdullahi, also known as phish or fish, was indicted in California in March 2017 by a federal grand jury and arrested by Canadian authorities September 2017. He was extradited to San Diego in October 2019 to face the terrorism charges.

U.S. Attorney Randy Grossman singled out the RCMP, Edmonton Police Services and prosecutors in both Alberta and Canada for their assistance in what he called a “multi-year, complex investigation.”

“Terrorist networks can’t survive without people like Abdullahi,” said Grossman. “With today’s guilty plea, we have delivered justice to someone who directly funded violence.”

Files from The Canadian Press were used in this report

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