Office of the Attorney General files indictment against one person for support of terrorist groups and proscribed representations of acts of violence

Bern, 20.12.2022 - The Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland (OAG) has filed an indictment in the Federal Criminal Court against a 26-year-old Turkish citizen residing in the canton of Schaffhausen. The OAG accuses him of supporting the proscribed groups “Al-Qaeda” and “Islamic State” and associated organizations, as well as the production and making available of representations of acts of violence.

The corresponding criminal proceedings had been opened in October 2019. Following extensive investigations the OAG has now filed an indictment against the suspect for violations of Art. 2 of the Federal Act on the Proscription of the Groups “Al-Qaeda” and “Islamic State” and Associated Organizations (SR 122) and representations of acts of violence (Art. 135 para. 1 Swiss Criminal Code SCC).

The OAG accuses the suspect of having encouraged a person who was a minor at the time of the crime to approve of the ideology of the “Islamic State” (IS) and of having furthered this person’s decision to travel to territory held by the IS and to join the IS there. This person, who resides in Austria, was arrested by the Austrian authorities shortly before his planned departure for Syria.

Furthermore, the suspect is accused of having produced and distributed propaganda material for the proscribed groups "Al-Qaeda" and IS or associated organizations. According to the indictment, he created and operated in particular an own "media agency" investing a considerable amount of time translating and editing corresponding propaganda material and distributing it via his social media channels.

The OAG also accuses the suspect of providing material support to the proscribed group IS. He did so by collecting money via a donation platform with the aim of donating this money to IS exponents in a prison camp in Syria, to enable them to escape from the camp.

According to the indictment, the suspect had also saved numerous files with videos and pictures showing proscribed representations of acts of violence and had sent one such image to another person, thereby committing the offence of producing and making available representations of acts of violence.

The OAG wishes to thank fedpol and the cantonal police forces involved for their valuable cooperation in this matter. From this point on, the Federal Criminal Court in Bellinzona is responsible for providing further information to the media. As is customary, the OAG will make its proposal for sentencing known at the main hearing in the Federal Criminal Court. The presumption of innocence applies until a final judgment has been passed.

Original text in German

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