A Minnesota man, accused of being a recruiter for the Islamic State (Isis), wanted to open up a jihadi people-smuggling route from Syria, through Mexico and into the US, to conduct attacks, court documents claim. Guled Ali Omar from Minneapolis has been accused by prosecutors of conspiring with a group of men to join the fight with Daesh (Isis) to carry out attacks on US soil.
The suspected jihadist is standing trial with three other men. According to court documents he told one of the defendants he had "found a means of reaching Syria by going through Mexico". He allegedly went on to explain that "defendants will be able to tell ISIL (an alternative name for Islamic State) of the route so that ISIL can send fighters into the United States via that route to mount attacks."
The 21-year-old has pleaded not guilty to multiple charges, including conspiracy to commit murder outside the US. Standing trial with Omar is Hamza Naj Ahmed, 21, Mohamed Abdihamid Farah, 22, and Abdirahman Yasin Daud, 22, who have also pleaded not guilty.
The men are all from Minnesota's Somali community and are believed to have held secret meetings planning to join up with IS in their self-declared caliphate that bridges Syria and Iraq. In a linked case another five men have pleaded guilty to one count each of conspiracy to support a foreign terrorist organisation, whilst a tenth suspect is at large, believed to be fighting with IS.
The FBI claim that up to a dozen Minnesota citizens have headed to fight with militant groups in Syria in recent years. They also believe that 22 men have joined islamist terrorists al-Shabaab in Somalia.
Ahead of the trial of the four terror suspects, set for May, prosecutors say they have audio recordings where the defendants discuss attacking the US and American citizens - including the murder of an FBI agent. The man who pleaded guilty, planned to fire a homemade rocket at an airplane.
Prosecutors also allege that all of the defendants watched sick IS propaganda videos whilst looking at gruesome images. Omar was said to have pictures of the burning World Trade Centre towers and former al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden on his mobile phone.