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FBI: Orange County man wanted to join terrorists


SANTA ANA, Calif. >> A Southern California man who federal authorities say was attempting to travel overseas to join an al-Qaida splinter group has been charged with lying on a passport application, according to court documents.

Adam Dandach, 20, was stopped by FBI agents at Orange County’s John Wayne Airport on July 2 as he tried to board a flight to Turkey, The Orange County Register reported Saturday.

Federal court filings say the Dandach — who also uses the name Fadi Fadi Dandach — told agents who interrogated him that he was trying to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. The group also known as ISIL or ISIS has overrun parts of Iraq and Syria.

According to the records, Dandach told agents he considered the killing of U.S. soldiers justified and would do anything the group asked him.

Dandach — of Orange — remains in custody and is scheduled to be arraigned in federal court Monday.

According to an indictment, Dandach on June 17 applied for an expedited U.S. passport to replace one he claimed to have mistakenly thrown away. Authorities say he initially gave the same explanation to the FBI agents who interviewed him.

However, Dandach’s brother told agents that his mother had taken his brother’s passport and money that he had saved and hid it from him after learning of the planned overseas trip, the newspaper said. Dandach’s mother gave the passport she had hidden from him to the agents.

After the agents accused him of lying on his passport application and indicated he could face criminal charges, Dandach said he was “more disappointed that he did not get to go to Syria than getting in trouble with law enforcement,” according to court records.

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