A North Carolina man pleaded guilty for conspiring with top Islamic State recruiter.
Justin Nojan Sullivan, a 20-year-old man from Morganton, North Carolina pleaded guilty to the charges admitting that he had conspired with online Islamic State recruiter, Junaid Hussain and other key digital operatives.
Junaid Hussain was killed in U.S. drone strike in Syria’s Raqqa on August 2015.
Hussain was pivotal in online recruitment and his network supporters’ remains active in both U.S. and UK.
Sullivan was arrested in June 2015, just over two months before Hussain was killed.
“Sullivan was in contact and plotted with now-deceased Syria-based terrorist Junaid Hussain to execute acts of mass violence in the United States in the name of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL),” Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security Mary B. McCord said in a statement.
Sullivan admitted in court on Wednesday that he attempted to commit acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries by planning mass casualty shooting attacks on behalf of ISIL against innocent people in North Carolina and Virginia, US Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose of the Western District of North Carolina added.
Investigation by FBI pieced together Sullivan’s online interactions with Hussain which began no later than June 2015.
The FBI also found that Sullivan began to watch and collect Islamic State propaganda, including beheading videos, “no later than” Sept. 2014. Sullivan also “destroyed religious items that belonged to his parents signaling that he was radicalized and dangerous.