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Press Release

Somali Citizen Sentenced to 15 Years in Federal Prison for Conspiring to Provide Material Support to Al-Shabaab

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

Assistant Attorney General for National Security John P. Carlin, Acting U.S. Attorney Richard L. Durbin Jr. of the Western District of Texas, FBI Special Agent in Charge Christopher Combs and Chief Patrol Agent Rudolfo Karisch of the U.S. Border Patrol’s Del Rio Sector announced today that Abdinassir Mohamud Ibrahim was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for conspiring to provide material support to Al-Shabaab, a designated foreign terrorist organization, and for making a false statement in an immigration matter.

Ibrahim, 43, a citizen of Somalia, was charged in a two-count superseding information, returned on July 31, 2014 and unsealed today in San Antonio, and pleaded guilty to both counts of the information on July 31, 2014.  Ibrahim admitted that from about May 18, 2010, to about Jan. 31, 2014, he knowingly conspired to provide material support and resources, specifically sending emails enlisting support for al-Shabaab and making a cash payment to a known member of al-Shabaab for the benefit of the organization.  Ibrahim knew at the time that al-Shabaab was designated by the United States as a foreign terrorist organization. 

Ibrahim also pleaded guilty to making a false statement in an immigration matter.  According to the information, Ibrahim knowingly lied in his application for naturalization as he had previously lied on his request for refugee status, falsely claiming that he was of a member of the minority Awer clan in Somalia and subject to persecution by the majority Hawiye clan.  However, Ibrahim was actually a member of the Hawiye clan and not subject to persecution.  Ibrahim also admitted he had lied on his naturalization application by having previously lied on his refugee application by falsely claiming that he had not provided material support to a terrorist group, when he had in fact provided material support in the form of cash to an al-Shabaab member. 

The case was investigated by the FBI and the Border Patrol together as part of the San Antonio Joint Terrorism Task Force.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mark Roomberg and Christina Playton for the Western District of Texas.

Updated June 16, 2016

National Security
Press Release Number: 15-141