A 24-year-old man from Sydney's south-west has faced court after being arrested for allegedly pledging allegiance to Islamic State. Joseph Saadieh from Chester Hill (one of the heavily-Islamised western suburbs of Sydney) was arrested on Friday following a seven-month investigation by the NSW Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCCT).
At Parramatta court on Saturday, he did not apply for bail but is expected to apply next Friday when he fronts court again. Mr Saadieh's lawyer Ihab Jamal said his client was keen to have his day in court.
Police said they found evidence that he had joined Islamic State back in 2018. Saadieh is a not uncommon last name in Lebanon; Joseph is the Christian form of that name. I wonder if he is a convert.
He has been charged with membership of the terrorist group.
Police said the man's online comments had escalated recently, that he had collected a large amount of online extreme material and was in possession of several improvised explosive recipes.
Australian Federal Police Commander Counter Terrorism Investigations Stephen Dametto said the man's actions were not in line with the Islamic faith.
"His actions are criminal and they represent hatred and terror," Commander Dametto said. "We will allege in court that this man was a member of ISIS and it shows there are still those in the community that seek to do us harm...."
One must assume that Commander Dametto has absolutely no idea how often and how much the Islamic founding texts enjoin "precisely" "hatred" toward the infidels and command and encourage the use of "terror" to make them submit. - and it seems Commander Stephen Dametto does not know that Mohammed himself, founder of Islam, is believed by Muslims to have proudly declared 'I have been made victorious by terror". 20 years after September 11, with so many murderous jihadi attacks all over the world, all carried out by devout orthodox Muslims in perfect accordance with the core teachings of Islam as written down in black and white in their founding texts .. and as exemplified by the founder and his 'companions'.. and people like Commander Dametto are STILL piffling on about how this or that murder-minded mohammedan's actions are "not in line with the Islamic faith".
Commander Dametto said Mr Saadieh had shown violent jihad support and would often justify martyrdom. "He has actually been a member of Islamic State for quite a while ... he had an extremist ideology," he said.
Note that ABC News does not describe him as a "Muslim man", because of course his actions are nothingtodowithIslam
Police said while investigations into IS recruitment in Australia are ongoing they do not anticipate further arrests connected to the case.
Good to see you back on the case Ms McIntosh. I had wondered about your absence in recent times.