Germany charges suspected Islamic State fundraiser who allegedly paid smugglers and helped free jailed fighter

Prosecutors in Germany have charged an Iraqi immigrant who is suspected of being a member of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) and funding the terrorist organization’s activities abroad.

The suspect, identified only as Aymen A.-J, is also suspected of the “preparation of a serious act of violence that is dangerous to the state,” the federal prosecutor’s office said in a statement on Friday.

The suspect allegedly sent $12,000 to Syria and Lebanon between September and the end of last year.

Prosecutors said the cash was used to pay for the care of women in Syrian refugee camps, to fund IS smugglers and to free one of the group’s fighters from prison.

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After entering Germany from Iraq in 2016, he has allegedly been an IS sympathizer since 2018, before trying to join the group abroad early last year.

IS chiefs told him to postpone joining the group and he remained in Germany, where he played a “central role” in fundraising, according to prosecutors.

In January 2021, the suspect was detained at the German-Swiss border as he allegedly made his way to fight for IS in Syria or Africa, and has since been in custody.

On Thursday a federal judge ordered his pre-trial detention. No trial date was released.

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