A 27-year-old Albanian man living in Brooklyn is due in court today to face charges he provided material support to terrorists in Pakistan.
FBI agents arrested Agron Hasbajrami at New York's Kennedy Airport on Tuesday as he tried to fly to Turkey. He hoped to make it to Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Area to train for jihad, an FBI news release said.
A search of Hasbajrami's Brooklyn home turned up a note which said "Do not wait for invasion, the time is martyrdom time."
Hasbajrami had been in contact with a Pakistani jihadist as far back as June 2010. He sent more than $1,000 through a series of wire transfers to the contact, a memo seeking to keep him custody said. Hasbajrami was aware that "the group was engaged in military operations against, and had killed, American soldiers," the memo said. He wanted to join the group, "indicating that he personally wished to die as a martyr."
He asked for guidance in getting to North Waziristan in Pakistan, so he could "marry with the girls in paradise," the memo said, adding that that is "common jihadist rhetoric that refers to dying as a martyr while fighting jihad."
The contact indicated that, once Hasbajrami arrived, he could be found through the Pakistani Taliban. An FBI confidential source reached out to Hasbajrami, saying he was part of the Islamic Jihad Union, and could help Hasbajrami meet up with his contact.
After his arrest, Hasbajrami admitted sending money to the contact and told FBI agents that he "intended to travel to Pakistan to fight."
If convicted Hasbajrami could be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison.