Adam Brookman could be the first Australian to be charged after returning from Syria

General image. Photo: Spencer Platt/ Getty

Adam Brookman could become the first Australian to be charged or jailed for his time spent in Syria.

The 39 year-old Melbourne man is due to arrive in Sydney today, escorted by authorities, after giving himself up to Australian Federal Police (AFP) in Turkey.

According to Brookman, who is trained as a nurse, he travelled to Syria to use his skills as a medic to help those caught up in the country’s conflict but was forced to join the IS terrorist group after he was injured in an airstrike and taken to a hospital controlled by the group.

However, under new anti-terrorism laws in Australia, simply travelling to areas of the Middle East is an arrestable offence.

Returning jihadists could face up to 25 years in prison if they have been found to have been fighting with a terror group, or found to have been in areas of Syria and Iraq banned under the new laws.

Australia will wait to see if the government makes an example of Brookman using its strengthened approach to counter-terrorism.

However according to Fairfax Media, Brookman’s arrest in Turkey comes as part of a deal with the AFP, who in return have agreed to facilitate his return to Australia.

Police are expected to interview him over the coming days in an attempt to gain evidence about his activities in Syria and alleged involvement with the IS.

The release of the national Counter-Terrorism Strategy revealed that since Australia’s terror alert was raised from medium to high in September 2014 six terror attacks have been disrupted in Australia. Read more about that here.

In other news, the body of Gold Coast man Reece Harding, 23, who was killed while fighting IS in Syria, is due to arrive in Australia today.

He left for Syria in May to fight with the Kurdish group, Lions of Rojava. He died on June 27 when he stepped on a land mine.

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