ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – An Austrian man ,who recruited two couples for the Islamic State (IS) to wage jihad in Syria, was sentenced to eight years in prison this week.
The 38-year-old man was convicted on Wednesday of playing a role in the recruitment of members for the jihadist group whereas a 24-year-old Bulgarian was given seven years in prison after been convicted of planning terrorist attacks.
The Austrian man played “a central ideological role” in a radical religious grouping and had convinced several people to join IS in Syria, prosecutors said, quoted by AFP.
They also stated that the man had influenced two sets of parents to take their nine children and travel to Syria. The families later returned to Austria and were themselves convicted.
The convicted Bulgarian man went to Syria in 2014 before returning home in 2015.
Police found a USB stick in his house containing manuals on how to create explosives and chemical weapons, as well as how to build explosive devices with a mobile phone detonator.
Since 2011, nearly 300 people have left or were intercepted trying to travel from Austria to fight in Syria and Iraq, according to data provided by Austrian Interior Ministry. About 50 people have died in the two war-torn countries while some 100 returned home.
Editing by Nadia Riva