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Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

Friday, July 21, 2017

Alleged ISIS Supporter Indicted For Attempting To Provide Material Support To Foreign Terrorist Organization

Defendant Amer Alhaggagi Was Arrested in November 2016 on Identity Theft Charges

SAN FRANCISCO - A federal grand jury in San Francisco indicted Amer Sinan Alhaggagi yesterday with attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization, announced United States Attorney Brian J. Stretch, Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security Dana J. Boente, and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Special Agent in Charge John F. Bennett. 

According to the indictment, Alhaggagi, 22, of Oakland, California, is alleged to have knowingly attempted to provide services and personnel to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, between July and November of 2016, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 2339B.  ISIS was designated a foreign terrorist organization by the United States Secretary of State in 2014.  The indictment alleges that the services Alhaggagi attempted to provide included opening social media accounts for the use, benefit, and promotion of ISIS, and that the personnel he provided was himself.  

The indictment also alleges three counts of identity theft offenses – two counts of identity theft, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1029, and one count of aggravated identity theft, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1028A.  With respect to those charges, an affidavit previously filed by an agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in connection with a criminal complaint in the same matter alleged that Alhaggagi had used a stolen credit card to make $4,932 in fraudulent online purchases from a clothing company.

The FBI arrested Alhaggagi on November 29, 2016, based on a criminal complaint charging identity theft.  Magistrate Judge Kandis Westmore ordered Alhaggagi detained following his arrest based on findings that he presented a flight risk and a danger to the community.  The complaint and the previous proceedings against Alhaggagi were unsealed when the indictment was returned.  

Alhaggagi’s arraignment has not yet been scheduled.  

An indictment merely alleges that crimes have been committed, and the defendants is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.  If convicted, the defendant faces a total of 47 years imprisonment for the four counts charged in the indictment, and a fine of $250,000 for each count.  However, any sentence following conviction would be imposed by the court after consideration of the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and the federal statute governing the imposition of a sentence, 18 U.S.C. § 3553.  

The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Special Prosecutions and National Security Unit of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of California, the United States Department of Justice National Security Division, the Berkeley Police Department, and members of the Joint Terrorism Task Force including, the Oakland Police Department.

National Security
Updated September 5, 2017