Place of Birth: France;
Mourad Fares alias Abou Hassan or Mourad al-Faransi, fled Syria in 2014, and was arrested in Turkey and handed over to French authorities the same year.
Prosecutors said he played a “crucial” role in the recruiting of young people to fight as jihadists in Syria, and noted a lack of any “real regret” for his actions.
Fares appeared unmoved as the verdict was read out at a special court Jan. 24 evening.
He also admitted to the court he “indirectly” recruited youths to fight as jihadists via his propaganda videos and “facilitated” the entry of a number of people into Syria.
He denied taking part in combat operations in Syria, where he travelled in 2014.
But prosecutors said he “participated in armed actions” with the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), later known as the Islamic State group, before leaving to a join a cell of French-speaking jihadists affiliated with the Al-Nusra front. The court also found Fares guilty of leading this cell.
He is sentenced to 22 years in prison for seeking to recruit dozens of youths to fight as jihadists in Syria and for leading a brigade of French-speaking Islamists in the war-torn country.