AP

New Mexico man charged with supporting Islamic State group

Aug 27, 2022, 5:11 AM | Updated: 5:14 pm

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico man has been arrested and charged with trying to provide material support to the Islamic State group and shutting down an online platform that could have tied two other men to similar charges.

Herman Leyvoune Wilson, 45, of Albuquerque, was arrested Friday and will remain in custody pending a scheduled Tuesday arraignment in federal court, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New Mexico said. Wilson’s newly appointed federal public defender did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment on the charges.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office statement said Wilson, also known as Bilal Mu’Min Abdullah, was indicted earlier in the week by a federal grand jury on the charges related to the Islamic State group, a U.S. designated foreign terrorist organization.

Federal prosecutors believe Wilson was trying to establish an “Islamic State Center” in New Mexico that would teach Islamic State group ideology, provide martial arts training and serve as a haven for people preparing to fight for the group in the U.S. and abroad.

Two men arrested in September 2020 for providing material support to the Islamic State group testified that Wilson had radicalized them to the group’s ideology. Prosecutors say that afterward Wilson allegedly shut down an online platform that could have tied the men to his group.

Kristopher Matthews and Jaylin Molina were arrested for providing material support to the Islamic State group and later pleaded guilty to that charge in the Western District of Texas. Prosecutors accused them of plotting to bomb or shoot up sites including the White House and Trump Tower in New York City.

The men were later convicted by a U.S. court in Texas. Matthews, 36, of South Carolina, was recently sentenced to 20 years in prison, and Molina, 24, of Cost, Texas, got 18 years.

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