Jalil Ibn Ameer Aziz Indicted for Providing Material Support to ISIL
HARRISBURG—The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Jalil Ibn Ameer Aziz, 19, a U.S. citizen and resident of Harrisburg, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Scranton on charges of conspiring and attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). His detention hearing and arraignment is scheduled for 3:00 p.m. in Harrisburg on December 23, 2015 before United States Chief Magistrate Judge Martin C. Carlson.
According to U.S. Attorney Peter Smith, the Indictment alleges that from July 2014 to December 17, 2015, Aziz knowingly conspired to provide, and attempted to provide, material support and resources, including personnel and services, to ISIL, a designated foreign terrorist organization.
Aziz was initially charged with the same offenses in a detailed criminal complaint unsealed on December 17, 2015 following his arrest. According to the complaint, Aziz used at least 57 different Twitter accounts to advocate violence against the United States and its citizens, to disseminate ISIL propaganda and espouse pro-ISIL views. Aziz allegedly posted a hyperlink containing the names, addresses, and other identifying information of 100 reported members of the U.S. Military and calls for violence against them. On at least three occasions, Aziz allegedly used his Twitter accounts and other electronic communication services to assist persons seeking to travel to and fight for ISIL. In one instance, Aziz allegedly acted as an intermediary between a person in Turkey and several well-known members of ISIL.
According to the allegations in the complaint, Aziz passed location information, including maps and a telephone number, between these ISIL supporters and a search of a backpack located in Aziz’s closet identified five loaded M4-style high-capacity magazines, a modified kitchen knife, a thumb drive, medication, and a balaclava (ski mask).
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF), which includes the Pentagon Force Protection Agency and the Pennsylvania State Police, with assistance from the Harrisburg Bureau of Police. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daryl F. Bloom and by Trial Attorneys Robert Sander and Adam L. Small of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.
Indictments are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.
The maximum penalty provided in the statute is 20 years’ imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. If convicted, the defendant’s sentence will be determined by the court after reviewing factors unique to this case, including the defendant’s prior criminal record, if any, and the defendant’s role in the offense and the characteristics of the violation. In all cases, the sentence will not exceed the statutory maximum and in most cases it will be less than the maximum.
Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant’s educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.