ISIS tries to influence criminals in Ferguson

FERGUSON, Mo. -- The tweets say "Hey blacks, ISIS will save you," and use the hashtags #IslamicState, #Ferguson and #Coming. The terror group ISIS, or Islamic State for Iraq and Syria was recruiting criminals and anarchists in Ferguson.

The FBI received the intelligence through situational reports. ISIS was targeting the criminals, not the peaceful protesters in Ferguson. ISIS wants nothing to do with people fighting for social justice.

The U.S. Attorney in Southern District of Illinois, Steve Wigginton, said ISIS wants people who hate the U.S. government as much they do.

"We received intelligence reports for law enforcement showing actual tweets ISIS was putting out encouraging Americans to join the people who were burning down buildings in Ferguson to engage that kind of conduct across America," said Wigginton.

He said situational reports show ISIS is recruiting heavily on the internet and through social media techniques. Somebody captured a picture of a person carrying an "ISIS is here" banner while CNN anchor Jake Tapper was interviewing peaceful protesters on live TV.

"They are trying to reach the people who are anti government to begin with. We have a number of those individuals in the U.S., whether they are sovereign citizens, whether they are anarchists, they all showed up at one point or another in the St. Louis area in the last few months," said Wigginton.

Isis terrorists made names for themselves by beheading American and International journalists and aid workers. They put those executions on YouTube.

"We are very concerned by threats posed by homegrown violent extremists from individuals who live in the same community they intend to attack," said FBI special agent in charge of the Springfield Illinois area, Sean Cox.

Cox said terrorist groups like ISIS are recruiting more Americans.

"These individuals are difficult for us to detect, as they are able to connect with other extremists with relative ease and they are more capable from an operational standpoint because they are familiar with their intended target areas," he said.

He said there's no way to know how many people ISIS recruited in Ferguson or across the country.

"It only takes one of them to recruit, one of them to do a bad act, and now you have the lone wolf and the lone wolf is the one we fear the most because we cannot predict when that lone wolf is going to strike," said Wigginton.

Cox and Wigginton said ISIS' recruiting power lies in social media.

"That's what brought them national and international prominence on top of of their horrific brutality," said Wigginton.

They can reach from the Middle East, to mid-America in the middle of chaos, in a second.


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