They're calling him the hipster terrorist.
On social media, Aws Mohammed Younis Al-Jayab looks like a fashionable millenial, posing for Instagram-filtered photos in pensive poses, wearing skinny jeans and Ray Bans, with liberal amounts of styling gel holding his wavy hair in place.
But Al-Jayab, an Iraqi-born Palestinian who came to the U.S. by way of Syria, allegedly fought with terrorist groups in the war-torn country, and bragged on social media about participating in a battle and executing three Syrian soldiers, the Daily Mail reported.
"I am eager to see blood," Al-Jayab wrote to a man he hoped would train him to use weapons like the American M16, according to an FBI affidavit.
The 23-year-old was arrested on Jan. 7 and hit with a federal charge for making a false statement involving international terrorism, the Department of Justice wrote in a media release after the arrest.
"According to the allegations in the complaint, the defendant traveled to Syria to take up arms with terrorist organizations and concealed that conduct from immigration authorities,” said U.S. Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner, federal prosecutor for the Eastern District of California.
Al-Jayab had already immigrated to the U.S. when he departed for the Middle East in late 2013, taking a flight from Chicago to Turkey, then joining up with the al-Nusra Front, a terrorist group that has since pledged loyalty to the Islamic State, officials said.
While he was in Syria fighting government forces, Al-Jayab kept social media followers informed about his alleged terrorist exploits, officials said, before returning to the U.S. in Jan. 23, 2014, and settling in Sacramento. Al-Jayab lied in a return interview with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, telling officials he traveled to Turkey to visit his grandmother.
In comments after Al-Jayab's Jan. 7 arrest, officials said they believed he intended to return to Syria to take up arms again on behalf of terrorist groups.
Another Iraqi-born Palestinian, 24-year-old Omar Faraj Saeed al Hardan, was arrested on Jan. 7 in Houston and charged with attempting to provide material support to ISIS, the Daily Mail reported.
While neither man was planning to attack targets stateside, the governors of Texas and California criticized President Barack Obama's policy allowing Syrian refugees to resettle in the U.S.
"This is precisely why I called for a halt to refugees entering the U.S. from countries substantially controlled by terrorists," Abbott said in a statement. "I once again urge the President to halt the resettlement of these refugees in the United States until there is an effective vetting process that will ensure refugees do not compromise the safety of Americans and Texans."