After a year of watching Ikaika Erik Kang, an FBI SWAT team arrested the active duty soldier in Hawaii over the weekend.
Kang, 34, a convert to Islam, was charged with seeking to provide classified military documents and support to Islamic State (ISIS).
Kang had been under surveillance by a number of law-enforcement agencies since he began making threatening remarks and voicing his support for ISIS beginning in 2011. He was arrested Saturday after swearing his loyalty to ISIS head Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and saying that he wanted to kill “a bunch of people.”
In videotaped sessions, he used his top-level combat training to instruct a person he believed was a member of the terror group.
A search of his computer yielded 18 military documents labeled “SECRET.” Sixteen of
those documents are currently classified. In addition, authorities found close to 500 documents related to ISIS or violence, including the al-Qaeda English-language magazine Inspire .
Kang also made statements to an undercover operative about traveling to Turkey and the possibility of joining and fighting for ISIS. To the same operative, he said the Pulse nightclub shooter “did what he had to do” and “America is the only terrorist organization in the world.”
He expressed support for the mass killing of Jews, saying, “Hilter was right.”
After his air-traffic controller’s license was temporarily taken away, he expressed a desire to torture the person responsible and researched the most effective and painful torture methods.
Kang also bought a commercial drone outfitted with a camera, saying it could be used by ISIS fighters to escape U.S. tanks.
He was in the possession of two registered firearms at the time of his arrest.
Kang enlisted in the military after the September 11, 2001 attacks. He was a veteran of two deployments to the Middle East – one in Iraq in 2010 and another in Afghanistan in 2014 and was the recipient of the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. He worked as an air-traffic controller for the army in Hawaii.
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