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UT Student Arrested on Charges of Supporting Terrorists

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A UT student was arrested yesterday at his home in Round Rock for allegedly providing material support to terrorists.

Rahatul Ashikim Khan, 23, is a senior government major enrolled full-time at UT. According to a Department of Justice press release, he is charged with conspiring to provide material support to terrorists from 2011-12. Also charged with the same offense was Austin man Michael Todd Wolfe, 23, who was trying to board a flight to Canada at Houston’s George W. Bush airport when he was arrested yesterday.

According to the criminal complaint, Khan used the aliases “Rahat,” “AuthenticTaheed19,” and “AT19” in chat rooms where he tried to recruit potential terrorists. He began communicating with an FBI informant and introduced the informant to several co-conspirators. According to the complaint, Khan also “discussed guns, training, the war against Islam, his preparation for the Third World War, shooting, and getting the youth interested in the knowledge of jihad … Khan referred to himself as a ‘jihadi … Khan mentioned he had tried to recruit people locally, but his parents were notified and he got into trouble.”

Khan is listed as a Distinguished College Scholar for spring 2014 in the College of Liberal Arts. A U.S. citizen who was born in Chittagong, Bangladesh, he lives in Round Rock with his parents and older brother. If convicted, Khan and Wolfe face up to 15 years in federal prison and a maximum $250,000 fine.

University spokesman Gary Susswein declined to comment and referred the Alcalde to Department of Justice spokesman Daryl Fields, who also declined to comment. It is not clear whether Khan tried to recruit other UT students.

Both men remain in federal custody pending a detention hearing scheduled for Friday at 2:30 p.m. before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark Lane in Austin.

Contributing reporting by Andrew Roush. Read the full criminal complaint against Khan below:

Khan Complaint

Rahatul Khan, left, and Michael Todd Wolfe, right, in booking photos from the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office and the Austin Police Department.

 

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