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NIA chargesheet on Shivamogga IS conspiracy: 2 B.tech graduates paid in crypto

Mar 17, 2023 04:45 PM IST

These IS terror operatives were being paid in crypto currencies by their online handler by fund transfers from abroad.

The National Investigation Agency has filed a chargesheet against two accused in the Shivamogga Islamic State (IS) conspiracy case in connection with the conspiracy hatched to further the activities of the Islamic State by carrying out acts of arson sabotage and violence in Karnataka. NIA re-registered the case in September 2022 and took over the investigations of the case registered by Karnataka Police after the stabbing of one Prem Singh at Shivamogga (Karnataka) on August 15, 2022 by accused Zabiulla and others.

NIA team investigating Shivmoga case

Maaz Muneer Ahmed (23) and Syed Yasin (22) of Shivamogga have been charged under sections 120B, 121A and 122 of IPC, 1860, sections 18, 18B, 20 & 38 of UA (P) Act, 1967 and sections 4 (i) & 5 of ES Act, 1908 and section 2 of the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971.

Both Maaz and Syed are B. Tech graduates and were radicalised and motivated by an online foreign-based handler to target public and private properties, including warehouses, liquor outlets, hardware shops, vehicles and properties belonging to citizens belonging to a particular community. They committed over 25 incidents of arson and sabotage, the chargesheet said.

On how they prepared for the rampage, the chargesheet said Maaz and Syed Yasin both went to Agumbe and Varahi river backwaters forest area of Shivamogga district for trekking and recce for hideouts. They procured explosives and prepared to fabricate an IED. Syed Yasin conducted a trial explosion of one of the IEDs at theVarahi river bank in Shivamogga. He also burnt an Indian National Flag and recorded a video to establish his anti-India credentials.

These IS terror operatives were being paid in cryptocurrencies by their online handler by fund transfers from abroad, the NIA said. Investigations have revealed that Maaz received Crypto equivalent to around 1.5 lakh from the online handler into accounts of his friends, whereas Syed Yasin received 62 K into the account of a friend.

As part of the larger IS conspiracy, accused Mohamed Shariq had planned to carry out IED blast at Kadri Temple, Mangaluru on November 19, 2022. However, the IED had exploded prematurely due to atimer malfunction, when Shariq was en route to the target location averting a potential disaster.

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