John Booker, 20, of Topeka, allegedly wanted to carry out an action on behalf of the terrorist group Islamic State. He was arrested and charged Monday with attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction and attempting to provide material support to a terrorist group.
The FBI has no shortage of cases, particularly recently, in which it has identified someone with Islamic State sympathies via their Facebook statuses, contacted them with an undercover agent pretending to share their views, encouraged them to act on behalf of the group, then arrested them.
The Facebook profile of Hasan Edmonds, arrested by an undercover agent March 25 for alleged IS support, was a key part of the agency’s evidence. That was also the case in the criminal complaint against Noelle Velentzas and Asia Siddiqui, the Queens women arrested in early April and charged with attempting to aid IS.
Booker, the FBI says, posted the following two Facebook statuses, leading to a civilian tip to the agency: “I will soon be leaving you forever so goodbye! I’m going to wage jihad and hopes that i die” and “Getting ready to be killed in jihad is a HUGE adrenaline rush!! I am so nervous. NOT because I’m scared to die but I am eager to meet my lord.”
After making contact, the undercover agent eventually supplied Edmonds with a fake bomb, it says, and arrested him when it became apparent he really did intend to carry out an attack.
Edmonds faces life in prison for the charges.
Photo via Keith Allison/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)