NY Man Arrested for Trying to Join ISIS Overseas

FILE - In this file photo taken Monday, June 23, 2014, fighters from the Islamic State group parade in a commandeered Iraqi security forces armored vehicle down a main road at the northern city of Mosul, Iraq.Uncredited / AP

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.
By Pete Williams

A New York man has been arrested and charged with trying to get overseas to join the ISIS terror group.

Ali Saleh, 22, of Queens, New York, is charged with with attempting to provide material support to a terror group. He was arrested earlier today at his home and appears in court this afternoon.

The FBI says in the past year he has tried several times to get to the Middle East to join ISIS. In August 2014, he booked a flight Kennedy airport to Istanbul. A few days earlier, the FBI says, he used his Twitter account to post, "I'm ready to die for the Caliphate, prison is nothing".

He did not take the trip but kept trying. In July of this year, prosecutors say, he booked a flight from JFK to Cairo.

"On the same day, Saleh used his Twitter account to communicate with an ISIL facilitator who instructed followers to contact him for hijrah advice to (the Islamic State) in Libya only," prosecutors say.

He was denied boarding at the airport.

In the next two days, he went to the airport, in Newark and Philadelphia Liberty but was again denied boarding. He then went to an AMTRAK station in Cleveland hoping to take a train to Toronto and travel to the Middle East from there.

The FBI says in an interview with federal agents, he said if he had not been arrested, he would have kept trying to get overseas.

There's no suggestion that he was plotting attacks in the U.S.