Three men were charged on Wednesday with conspiracy to support Islamic State, including two who planned to travel to Syria to fight on behalf of the radical group, U.S. authorities said.
One of the men, Akhror Saidakhmetov, 19, of Kazakhstan, was arrested on Wednesday at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, where authorities said he was attempting to board a flight to Turkey on his way to Syria.
Another defendant, Abdurasul Hasanovich Juraboev, 24, of Uzbekistan, previously purchased a ticket for a March flight to Istanbul, said Loretta Lynch, U.S. Attorney in Brooklyn.
Abror Habibov, 30, of Uzbekistan, was accused of funding Saidakhmetov’s efforts.
All three men live in Brooklyn.
At a hearing in Brooklyn federal court for Juraboev and Saidakhmetov, Adam Perlmutter, a lawyer for Saidakhmetov, called his client “a very young man” and said they would fight the case “vigorously.”
Habibov was expected to appear in federal court in Jacksonville, Florida, on Wednesday as well.
Juraboev drew the attention of federal agents when he posted messages on an Uzbek-language website stating his desire to join Islamic State and his willingness to kill U.S. President Barack Obama. A U.S.-led coalition has been fighting Islamic State, which controls swaths of Iraq and Syria.
Agents interviewed Juraboev at his home in August 2014, when he acknowledged wanting to fight for Islamic State in Syria and confirmed he would be willing to harm Obama, according to the criminal complaint.
He also told the agents about a friend, Saidakhmetov, who shared similar views, the complaint said.
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