Aurora, Colo. man arrested for allegedly aiding foreign terrorists

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DENVER — An Aurora, Colorado man is in federal custody for allegedly planning to travel overseas to fight with a known terrorist organization.

Jamshid Muhtorov, 35, a refugee from Uzbekistan, was arrested at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport on Saturday while en-route to Istanbul, Turkey, federal prosecutors said.

He made his initial appearance in U.S. District Court in Chicago Monday morning.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Muhtorov, who also goes by the names Abumumin Turkistony and Abu Mumin, had ongoing communications with leaders of the Islamic Jihad Union (IJU), an extremist group that splintered from the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan in the early 2000s.

The IJU, according to the Department of Justice, has been linked to numerous attacks in Uzbekistan and against coalition forces in Afghanistan dating back to 2004.

“Muhtorov allegedly has sworn allegiance to the IJU, stating he was ready for any task, even with the risk of dying,” said Jeff Dorschner, a local spokesman for the U.S. Department of Justice. “The alleged activities of Muhtorov highlight the continued interest of extremists residing in the United States to join and support overseas terrorists.”

Dorschner said Muhtorov is not accused of plotting attacks against targets inside the United States.

Muhtorov faces a charge of providing and attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization. The charges a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison, and up to a $250,000 fine.

According to the criminal complaint, Muhtorov worked as a commercial trucker. He resigned earlier this month.

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