A 31-year-old Baltimore man flew to Somalia to join al Qaeda’s affiliate terrorist group in the East African country, according to a federal indictment unsealed Monday.
Maalik Alim Jones left Baltimore in 2011, and flew to Somalia. While there, he received training from al Shabaab, including how to shoot an AK-47 and fire a rocket-propelled grenade. He was a member of al Shabaab’s fighting forces, including a specialized force that attacked soldiers in Kenya. In all, he was a member of the group for four years, the indictment states.
He was arrested on December 7 in Somalia while attempting to get on a boat to leave Somalia for Yemen. Authorities were able to link Jones to the group because he appeared in a pair of al Shabaab videos. One of the clips includes fighters who attacked a Kenyan base on June, 14, 2015, the indictment states.
Jones faces a host of terrorism-related charges, and could receive life in prison.
Having allegedly sworn allegiance to al Shabaab, a terrorist organization bent on destroying America, Maalik Jones will now face American justice in a Manhattan federal court,” U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara of the Southern District of New York said in a statement.
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