by Florian Flade
“We as Muslims should seek the wealth of the disbelievers as a form of jihad in the path of Allah. That would necessitate that we spend the money on the cause of jihad and not on ourselves” – now killed US-Yemeni Anwar al-Awlaki wrote in a issue of the English-language „Inspire“ magazine released by Al-Qaida in Yemen in early 2011.
In Germany, a 27 year-old student obviously felt strongly moved by Awlaki´s sanctioning of crime in the name of Allah to support the Jihad against the disbelievers. Halil S. needed money, enough money to finish with a plot he and his comrades had been planning for months.
On December 8 a police commando of the German special police unit GSG-9 raided a student´s house in the West-German city of Bochum. Halil S. was arrested in his room while he was logging onto the Internet. He is – according to German prosecution – part of the „Düsseldorf Cell“, an Al-Qaida-linked terrorist cell that was busted by German intelligence in April. The „Düsseldorf Cell“ consisted of the three men Abdeladim El-K., Amid C. and Jamil S who were all arrested in several police raids. El-K. who is considered to be the head of the „Düsseldorf Cell“ was trained in an Al-Qaida camp in Waziristan in early 2010 and was in contact with Al-Qaida ideologue Attiyatullah al-Libi.
Halil S. aka „Abdullah“ was recruited by Abdeladim El-K. and was part of a Jihadi supporter network. On April 16 Halil S. visited El-K. in his apartment in Düsseldorf. He handed him a list of 45 names, credit card accounts and passwords – information that was useful for online crimes and the financing of a terrorist attack. German intelligence agents observed the meeting in El-K.´s apartment but were unable to identify Halil S..
When the „Düsseldorf Cell“ was arrested, Halil S. decided to move on with the plot that his „Emir“ Abdeladim El-K. had planned: building a bomb and carrying out a terrorist attack in Germany. Immediately after El-K.´s arrest S. ordered a wiretap detection device and contacted common criminals living in the North of Germany.
In the city of Kiel Halil S. found what he was searching for. Florian M. and five other people from Kiel started to work with Halil S. using fake names and passports for online shopping. The group sold items via Ebay including cameras and thereby was able to raise 5.200 EUROs. According to the prosecution Florian M. and his friends from Kiel did not know about Halil S. intention and his Jihadi terrorist background. They thought they were involved in crime not terrorism.
In May Halil S. contacted the Jihadi cleric Anwar al-Awlaki located in Yemen via e-mail. The German-born Islamist told Awlaki about his plans and his desire to obtain weapons. Awlaki responded. German security officials were not willing to confirm or deny the e-mail exchange between Halil S. and Awlaki. There is no information on what Awlaki´s answers or orders to Halil S. were – but there were answers.
After months of observation and unsuccessful attempts of online searches on Halil S.´computer German authorities decided to move in and arrest the 27 year-old student.
More than 150 police officers were involved in 18 raids that took place in Düsseldorf, Herne, Gelsenkirchen, Kiel and Hamburg. Only two people were arrested: Islamist Halil S. and criminal Florian M..