A 44-year-old American man named Donald Ray Morgan was arrested at New York's JFK Airport under suspicion of being a militant with ties to ISIS, a jihadist group that now calls itself the Islamic State. ISIS has been making strategic advances and carrying out violent attacks in Syria and Northern Iraq.
According to the New York Daily News, Morgan was arrested by FBI agents upon his return to the United States from Lebanon, where his wife lives. He arrived in New York via a Delta Airlines flight from Frankfurt, Germany, and was suspected to be en route to his home in North Carolina. Morgan had reportedly been in Lebanon for the previous eight months. He is being held without bond.
The primary motivation for the FBI's arrest of Morgan was reportedly the man's Twitter feed, which he operates under the name "Abu Omar al Amreeki." According to USA Today, Brooklyn Magistrate Ramon Reyes deemed Morgan too risky to release back to North Carolina due to a series of tweets pledging allegiance to Islamic State (ISIS)'s Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Assistant Brooklyn Attorney Nadia Moore made strong claims about Morgan's potential link to the organization in general.
"It's possible that he trafficks in guns to people in this organization (ISIS)," Moore reportedly said in court.
According to CNN, Morgan was charged with illegal weapons possession by a federal grand jury in North Carolina and for violating probation stemming from an earlier, weapons-related charge. The man is not currently suspected of being actively involved in any ISIS plots in the U.S. or abroad.