A 20-year-old Jewish American has been arrested by the FBI after posing as an Australian Islamic State jihadist to facilitate and encourage terrorist attacks in Australia.
The 20-year-old from Jacksonville, Florida — identified by Fairfax Media as Joshua Ryne Goldberg — had been using the alias “Australi Witness”, an IS supporter who had been “immediately enamoured with the Islamic State’s ideology after being introduced to it by some Muslim brothers”.
Goldberg had used the account to post photos of a homemade bomb with “two pounds of explosives inside” as well as instructing people on how to make a pressure-cooker bomb including nails, glass and metal.
Earlier this year, Goldberg wrote an online post saying that he had successfully encouraged two mujahideen online — one in Los Angeles and one in Melbourne — to carry out jihad in their respective cities.
“Both of those mujahideen will, using guns, shoot up local synagogues when the maximum amount of Jews are praying.
“The entire thing was my idea, and I helped them every step of the way.”
“I have dedicated my life to striking fear into the hearts of the kuffar (an Arabic term that refers to non-believers or non-Muslims) and coordinating acts of jihad around the world.
“The Jews are the worst enemies of Allah. When Islam conquers Australia, every single Jew will be slaughtered like the filthy cockroaches that they are.”
Goldberg’s arrest was authorised on Wednesday in the lead-up to the 14th anniversary of the September 11 attacks after the Australian Federal Police alerted US authorities that the impostor was most likely based in the United States.
“This man thought that he could willingly and maliciously distribute disturbing information via the internet and never have his identity discovered,” said AFP acting deputy commissioner for national security, Neil Gaughan.
“This operation again highlights how law enforcement can investigate people in the online space and use our long-established partnerships to work with overseas agencies to bring people to account for their actions.”
Goldberg is now facing a a 20-year prison term if convicted.
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