A British sales consultant has been convicted of ISIS membership after paying smugglers with Bitcoin to free the group’s supporters from detention camps in Syria.
Hisham Chaudhary, 28, using the cryptocurrency, received and transferred thousands of pounds to ensure breakouts from the Kurdish-run camps.
Chaudhary ran a propaganda, communications and funding operation for the terrorist organisation from his home in Leicester, central England.
He proved himself to be a trusted member of the organisation, creating videos to spread the group’s ideology. He also sought help to try to prevent the videos from being taken down.
He has been convicted of seven terrorism offences after a five-week trial in Birmingham, England. Chaudhary, who was detained in November 2019, was held in prison after the verdicts and will be sentenced in September.
Police said he subscribed to the group's ideology and “immersed himself in supporting their activities and creating and spreading propaganda on their behalf".
His activities included setting up safe communication networks for other ISIS supporters.
Martin Snowden, a senior counter-terrorism officer, said: “From the comfort of his home in the UK, Hisham Chaudhary took an active role in promoting, supporting and funding terrorism.
“Despite the weight of the evidence against him, Hisham Chaudhary has tried to present himself as a humanitarian. He is in fact a terrorist and has been recognised as such by the jury.”