Bernard Raymond Augustine
Place of Birth: United States;
Bernard Raymond Augustine, a U.S. citizen and California resident is detained by the U.S. security forces for attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State terrorist group.
In February 2016, Augustine traveled from San Francisco to Northern Africa with the goal of joining the Islamic State, a designated foreign terrorist organization.
In the months leading up to his travel, the defendant watched Islamic State propaganda, including videos glorifying Islamic State’s violence, such as “The Flames of War.”
Augustine conducted internet searches for, among other things, “how to safely join the Islamic State,” and reviewed websites related to Islamic State recruitment practices, including one titled “How does a Westerner join the Islamic State? Is there a recruitment or application process?”
He also posted numerous statements in support of Islamic State terrorist group and violent extremism on the internet.
Augustine posted statements such as “the Islamic State is the true Islam,” “Muslims who leave the West … answer the call for the struggle, and march until they are victorious or martyred are the true believers,” and the Islamic State caliphate “can’t be established and maintained except through the blood of the mujahideen who practice the true belief.”
Augustine then purchased a one-way airplane ticket and traveled to Tunisia so that he could present himself as a willing participant in Islamic State’s terrorist activity.
After arriving in Tunisia, Augustine was detained by local authorities before he could make it to Islamic State-controlled territory across the border in Libya.
He was subsequently returned to the United States in 2018, where he was brought to the Eastern District of New York for prosecution.
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