About 81 percent of ISIS-linked suspects charged in the U.S. are American citizens

A new study has shown that of the ISIS-linked suspects who have been charged in the United States, none came from Syria, with the vast majority of convicted terror-linked suspects being born here in the U.S.

Sixty-eight people have been indicted because of alleged involvement in ISIS, 18 of whom have been convicted with an average sentence of 10-years three-months, according to figures published this week by the Center on National Security at Fordham University.

The data shows that only three of the indicted in connection with the Islamic State was a refugee and none came from Syria. About 80.9% of those concerned are U.S. citizens and 44 of them are born in America.

“They are young, they are spread over a wide geography, they are impervious to profiling in many ways,” said Karen Greenberg, director of the center, who has tallied cases dating back to March 2014 when ISIS made massive territorial gains in Iraq.

The growing political buzz over the perceived security threat posed by the influx of Syrian refugees was spurred by the November 13 Paris terror attacks. Many in the U.S. Congress have supported bills to limit or completely suspend the asylum program laid out by the Obama administration.

“We have tremendous border controls in this country,” Greenberg said. “We’ve spent 14 years and almost a trillion dollars on our security industry. We’re pretty good at vetting them, despite what Marco Rubio says.

“Law enforcement is being very careful about these arrests. They really don’t see a great domestic terrorism threat here. Of course we know that anything could happen, but compared to abroad, the terrorism threat is really quite low.”

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Jonas and Hasan Edmonds (Facebook)

Greenberg added that since the post 9/11 decade, many in the FBI have been accused of using unconstitutional methods to link people to the Al-Qaeda terrorist network.

“You always have to be vigilant,” Greenberg said. “There are a couple of cases where there has been concern. But generally they’re more like deterrent cases. It’s no longer about trying to see how far you will go. It’s more, ‘You’re 16, we don’t want to know how far you will go.’”

[The Guardian] Featured image: Noelle Velentzas and Asia Siddiqui (AP)

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