A San Diego man was sentenced to 10 years in prison for illegal possession of a firearms cache and body armor and making false statements to federal agents involving international terrorism.
Marchello Dsaun McCain, 35, a previously convicted felon (for assault with a firearm), provided assistance to others who had joined ISIS abroad, including his brother Douglas McCain.
Knowing that his brother intended to travel abroad to join ISIS, McCain deposited money in his wife’s bank account, then let his brother use his wife’s credit card to purchase plane tickets to Turkey, a known entry point to Syria for foreign fighters. He also let his brother make hotel reservations from the same credit card.
McCain regularly communicated with his brother and others regarding the financial and logistical needs of foreign fighters in Syria, at one point wiring $800 to an ISIS operative in Turkey to support his brother, among others. He also agreed to travel to Syria to join them.
In August of 2014, McCain’s brother became the first American known to have been killed fighting for ISIS in Syria.
The next January, McCain was arrested on the firearms charges. Eight months later, he pleaded guilty to lying to FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force agents about his assistance to and knowledge of individuals engaged in violent terrorist activities abroad.
“ISIS has brought the war on terror closer to home by directing and inspiring attacks in the U.S. and other countries, thereby putting Americans lives in danger,” said U.S. Attorney Adam Braverman at McCain’s sentencing. “By lying to federal agents, Marchello McCain delayed, frustrated and thwarted an investigation into a group that supplied U.S. and Canadian fighters to ISIS. We are committed to doing whatever it takes to protect American lives here and abroad.”
“Counterterrorism investigations are the highest priority investigations conducted by FBI Joint Terrorism Task Forces,” added FBI Special Agent-in-Charge Eric S. Birnbaum. “When someone misleads or obstructs counterterrorism investigations, this can adversely affect investigative activity in these important cases.”
McCain also acknowledged he illegally possessed over nine firearms, which included a stolen firearm and several semi-automatic 9 mm pistols, an AR-15 style semi-automatic rifle and an M1 Carbine .30 caliber semi-automatic rifle with a large capacity magazine. He also admitted that about three weeks before his brother left for Syria, he went to a San Diego gun range with his brother and shot firearms, including an AR-15 style semi-automatic rifle and a 12-gauge pump-action shotgun.
Also in California, an ex-Marine and convert to Islam was arrested in San Francisco in December 2017 for plotting a large-scale terror attack on Christmas Day, on the city’s Francisco’s Pier 39, a popular tourist attraction.
Authorities began watching the suspect, Everitt Aaron Jameson, a 26-year-old tow truck driver who was trained as a sharp shooter and now goes by the name of Abdallah abu Everitt ibn Gordon al-Amriki, after a tip from an informant.