USA citizen allegedly used fake eBay sales to hide ISIS funding

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USA citizen allegedly used fake eBay sales to hide ISIS funding

The Islamic State (ISIS) used eBay to get funds to an operative in the USA, according to a detailed Federal Bureau of Investigation report.

Elshinawy allegedly pledged his allegiance to IS and received nearly 9,000 dollars through fake eBay transactions by pretending to sell printers, according to the newspaper.

The man, Mohamed Elshinawy, was arrested in Maryland last May and, according to the report, pretended to sell computer printers on the online market place to have funds passed to him through PayPal, The Wall Street Journal reported late Thursday.

A recently unsealed affidavit said that the suspect was part of a global network and was told to use the money for "operational purposes", meaning a possible terror attack.

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Elshinawy is now in federal custody awaiting trial and has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him for conspiracy to provide and providing material support to a foreign terrorist organization, terrorism financing, and making false statements in connection to terrorism. The scheme was managed by senior ISIS figure Siful Sujan, who was killed in an airstrike in Syria at the end of 2015. The $8,700 Elshinawy received from Sujan was allegedly meant to help fund a terrorist attack. He entered a plea of not guilty to the charges of backing the terrorist group.

But some alleged perpetrators inspired by Islamic State have gotten small sums through low-level fraud such as check scams, or through financial channels where regulators have been paying less attention.

A spokesman for eBay said the company is closely working with law enforcement on the case, stressing that it has "zero tolerance" for criminal activities on its platform. "We proactively report suspicious activities and respond quickly to lawful requests to support law enforcement agencies in their investigations".

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