New York - Azizjon Rakhmatov, 32, a citizen of Uzbekistan and resident of New Haven, Connecticut, pleaded guilty today to conspiring to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization, the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS). Today’s plea took place before U.S. District Court Judge William F. Kuntz II.
John C. Demers, Assistant Attorney General for National Security; Richard P. Donoghue, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, FBI, New York Field Office; and James P. O’Neill, Commissioner, New York City Police Department (NYPD), made the announcement.
According to court filings, Rakhmatov’s co-defendants Abdurasul Juraboev and Akhror Saidakhmetov planned to travel to Syria to fight on behalf of ISIS. Rakhmatov and co-defendant Abror Habibov discussed providing their own money to cover Saidakhmetov’s travel expenses and to purchase a firearm for Saidakhmetov once he arrived in Syria. Rakhmatov also agreed to collect money from others to fund Saidakhmetov’s travel. On the day before Saidakhmetov’s scheduled departure, Rakhmatov transferred $400 into co-defendant Akmal Zakirov’s personal bank account to facilitate Saidakhmetov’s travel to and expenses in Syria.
Juraboev, Saidakahmetov, Habibov and Zakirov have previously pleaded guilty. Juraboev and Saidakahmetov each were sentenced to 15 years’ imprisonment. Habibov and Zakirov are awaiting sentencing. When sentenced, Rakhmatov faces up to 15 years’ imprisonment.
Assistant United States Attorneys Douglas M. Pravda, David K. Kessler, and J. Matthew Haggans are in charge of the prosecution, with assistance provided by Trial Attorney Steven Ward of the National Security Division’s Counterterrorism Section.