DAYTON — UPDATE @4:35 a.m. (March 8):
A Dayton man found guilty in December of attempting to provide support to ISIS will appear in court for sentencing hearing Friday.
Federal law enforcement said Laith Alebbin, 27, called himself “a perfect recruit for ISIS” in court documents filed after Alebbini was picked up after attempting to board a plane at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport. He faces a maximum prison sentence is 20 years.
UPDATE @ 2:53 p.m.
Laith Alebbini has been found guilty of attempting to provide support or resources to a foreign terrorist organization.
U.S. District Judge Walter Rice stated that the government proved each and every element of the attempted crime.
Rice also found Alebbini guilty of conspiracy to provide support to a foreign terrorist organization, namely the Islamic State or ISIS.
Rice said Alebbini's sentencing is scheduled for March 8, 2019.
The case was the first terrorism trial in the Southern District of Ohio. He was indicted for conspiracy and knowingly attempting “to provide material support and resources to a foreign terrorist organization in the form of personnel to work under ISIS’s direction and control.”
Alebbini, 28, who moved to the area in early 2017, was arrested in April 2017 at Cincinnati’s airport with airline tickets to the Middle East. He has been in custody since.
He was tried over three weeks last month. In closing arguments, prosecutors said Alebbini was taking actions to join ISIS, which they supported with messages exchanged between friends and family. Federal public defender Thomas Anderson said the government is conflating words with actions and that there’s a difference between radical thoughts and radical actions.