Spain has arrested two Moroccan men on suspicion of collecting money for the Islamic State. This is the first successful arrest of Islamic State financiers on the European continent, according to Spanish authorities.
The two men were brothers, aged 33 and 22, and were arrested in the northeastern city of Girona.
Police found large sums of cash and telecommunications data when they raided the brothers' apartment. Authorities hope the arrests will help lead to further arrests of members of the Islamic State's finance network across Europe.
A third brother was reportedly part of the cell but is said to have travelled to Syria to join the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) with his wife and two children and died there.
"Investigators found that the two suspects, along with their brother who died in Syria, managed to send funds to financial administrators of the "Islamic State" using false identities attributed to the terrorist organization's managers," the Spanish Interior Ministry said in a statement.
"These suspected identities form part of the ‘Islamic State's’ economic recruitment center at the international level, as evidenced by international contacts identified in the investigation," the statement continued.
Spain has arrested at least 30 people so far this year with suspected links to the Islamist terrorist groups including the Islamic State.
For more information on the Islamic State and its international network of jihadists, see Clarion Project’s Special Report: The Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL)