By Matt Dean, Fox News Producer
A Washington, DC Metro Transit Authority police officer has been charged with attempting to provide material support to ISIS – the first ever law enforcement officer arrested for supporting the terror group.
In a criminal complaint unsealed Wednesday against Virginia resident Nicholas Young, authorities allege he attempted to send money to ISIS through a mobile-based gift card over an unnamed messaging service the terror group utilizes for recruiting purposes. The transaction, which was redeemed by the FBI for $245, was made in July 2016.
Despite Wednesday’s arrest, the Department of Justice said there was never any threat to the public or a plot by Young to target the public transit system he was hired to protect.
Young, a 13-year veteran of the capital region’s transit police department, was arrested by FBI agents at his office Wednesday morning without incident.
Court documents paint the story of an individual with ties to suspicious individuals and with terrorist aspirations abroad.
The criminal complaint connects 36-year-old to two convicted Washington, DC-area terrorist sympathizers, Zachary Chesser and Amine El Khalifi.
Chesser was sentenced in federal court in 2011 to 25 years in prison for aiding Al Qaeda affiliate Al Shabaab. Chesser is famously known for threatening the creators of South Park for its depiction of the prophet Mohamed. Khalifi was arrested in 2012 for attempting to detonate an explosive vest in the U.S. Capitol Building.
Court document show federal investigators also questioned Young about trips he had taken to Libya in 2011. Nicholas Young told FBI agents during an interview that he traveled twice to the North African nation to assist rebels attempting to overthrow the Qaddafi regime.
A baggage search by Customs and Border Protection on one of Young’s outbound trips revealed he had traveled with body armor, a Kevlar helmet, and “several other military-style items,” according to the criminal complaint.
Young is also alleged to have been in possession of a large cache of firearms, including numerous rifles and handguns at his home.
His terrorist leanings came blatantly into the spotlight in 2015 when he admitted to interviewers at the Metro Transit Authority Police Department that he dressed up as Jihadi John for Halloween in 2014. According to the criminal complaint, as part of his costume, “Young stuffed an orange jumpsuit with paper to portray a headless hostage, and he carried that around with him through the party.”
In that same interview, the Muslim convert admitted to having previously dressed up as a Nazi and collecting Nazi memorabilia as well as possessing a tattoo of a German eagle on his neck.
Young makes his initial appearance in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia Wednesday afternoon. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison.