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Seattle man pleads not guilty to trying to join ISIS

Williams is charged with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

SEATTLE — A 20-year-old Seattle man has pleaded not guilty to a federal charge that he tried to join the Islamic State group. 

Federal prosecutors say Elvin Hunter Bgorn Williams was arrested late last month at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport as he checked in for a flight to Cairo. 

A complaint filed in U.S. District Court said members of a Seattle-area mosque who had been trying to de-radicalize Williams were the ones who tipped off the FBI that he continued to espouse violence and extremism.

According to the complaint, a member of the mosque contacted the FBI in November 2020 with concerns about Williams. Williams was using mosque-provided electronic devices to engage in online chats with ISIS radicals and to view ISIS propaganda videos of beheadings and other acts of violence, the complaint said. 

RELATED: Feds: Seattle man arrested for trying to join ISIS terror group

Using confidential sources close to Williams, the FBI began monitoring his activity after the tip from the mosque and became aware of his plans to travel to the Middle East and join ISIS.

Williams is charged with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.  

A magistrate judge set Williams' trial for Aug. 9.