The Wall Street Journal: Trial starts for Air Force veteran accused of supporting ISIS
A U.S. Air Force veteran heads to Brooklyn federal court this week as one of the first suspected Islamic State supporters in the country to go on trial.
Tairod Pugh, a U.S. citizen, is among the 80-plus Americans who have been arrested since early 2014 on charges related to the terrorist group, which is also known as ISIS or ISIL. So far, fewer than one-third of the defendants have pleaded guilty. The rest of the cases are pending.
Pugh has pleaded not guilty to charges of attempting to provide material support to Islamic State and obstruction of justice. If convicted on both counts, Pugh faces a maximum of 35 years in prison.
Prosecutors allege Pugh traveled to Turkey in January 2015 with the intention of crossing the border to Syria to join the terrorist group. Turkish authorities denied his entry into the country and sent him back to Egypt, where he had been living. Pugh was then deported to the U.S. and arrested in Asbury Park, N.J.
Opening statements in Pugh’s trial are expected to begin Monday.
An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.