Federal Bureau of Investigation uncovers IS scheme to transfer money to USA via eBay

Federal Bureau of Investigation uncovers IS scheme to transfer money to USA via eBay

Prospera Giambalvo
Agosto 12, 2017

United States investigators have uncovered a money laundering operation run by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) that transferred funds to an alleged ISIS supporter in the U.S. using fake eBay transactions, The Wall Street Journal reported.

The suspect pledged allegiance to ISIS and used eBay to pretend to sell computer printers but instead received funds from overseas through PayPal, the Journal said.

The alleged recipient of the funds was an American citizen in his early 30s who had been arrested more than a year ago in Maryland after a lengthy Federal Bureau of Investigation surveillance operation that found the first clues to the suspected network. The scheme was managed by senior ISIS figure Siful Sujan, who was killed in an airstrike in Syria at the end of 2015. He is thought to have been connected with now-deceased ISIS operative Junaid Hussain, who similarly inspired would-be Jihadi's in the U.S. Sujan was killed in a U.S. drone strike in December 2015.

According to the media, Elshinawy admitted he was told to use the received money for "operational purposes" within the country, but denied he planned any assaults in the US. Elshinawy claims he did not plan to plan to carry out an attack, and he's now awaiting trial. ISIS has raised money through crowdfunding websites, social media fundraisers, and prepaid cards, according to a 2015 report from an global task force that investigates and combats money laundering and terror financing.

A spokesman for eBay told the New York Daily News that the platform has "zero tolerance for criminal activity on our marketplace and we worked with law enforcement to bring this individual to justice".