U.S. Department of Justice: Leading ISIS Media Figure and Foreign Fighter Sentenced to Life Imprisonment

A Saudi-born Canadian citizen was sentenced today to life imprisonment for conspiring to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), a designated foreign terrorist organization, resulting in death.

According to court documents, Mohammed Khalifa, aka Abu Ridwan Al-Kanadi and Abu Muthanna Al-Muhajir, 39, served in prominent roles within ISIS starting in 2013 and continuing until his capture by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in January 2019, following a firefight between ISIS fighters and the SDF. In addition to serving as a fighter and personally executing two Syrian soldiers on behalf of ISIS, Khalifa served as a lead translator in ISIS’s propaganda production and the English-speaking narrator on multiple violent ISIS videos.

In the spring of 2013, Khalifa traveled to Syria with the intent of becoming a foreign fighter and ultimately joining ISIS. In or around November 2013, he joined ISIS and swore allegiance to then-ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. In early 2014, he was recruited to join ISIS’s media department due, in part, to his language abilities as a fluent English and Arabic speaker. Starting in 2016, Khalifa directed various supporter networks that assisted in the translation, production and dissemination of propaganda released under various ISIS media brands in order to reach Western audiences. He worked within the ISIS media operation until late 2018.

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Source: U.S. Department of Justice