Cary man charged with terrorism has 'psychological issues' - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Cary man charged with terrorism has 'psychological issues'

Posted: Updated:
CARY, N.C. -

A terrorism expert said a Cary man arrested on terrorism related charges wasn't a threat to the United States but those who knew him said he is a troubled man.

Basit Javed Sheikh, 29, is charged in a federal criminal indictment with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. He was arrested on Nov. 2 at RDU before boarding the first of a series of flights that would take him to Lebanon to link up with an al-Qaida group.

After reading the criminal complaint against Sheikh, terrorism expert and Duke professor David Schanzer said "He didn't seem to have direct animus against the United States or plotting to do anything here."

The 25-page federal complaint outlines how Sheikh made contact with a confidential source and later with an undercover FBI agent via FaceBook as he tried to find a way to join the fighting in Syria.

Khalilah Sabra, director of Immigration and Civil Rights at the Muslim American Public Affairs Council said Sheikh was recently dismissed from his job at the post office and dealt with many issues.

"From what I understand, he has psychological  issues and he spent most of his days on the computer," Sabra said. "That was his life."

Professor Schanzer said individuals like Sheikh who are lost for one reason or another search for more in their lives.

"They want something else in their life and see joining one of these organizations as exciting," Schanzer said.

Sheikh's public defender lawyers said they have no comment on the situation currently.

Meanwhile, his family is attempting to hire a lawyer who specializes in national security law. 

RELATED STORIES

  • Floydfest attracts people from all walks of life

    Floydfest attracts people from all walks of life

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 11:26 PM EDT2014-07-24 03:26:58 GMT
    FloydFest 13 kicked off on Wednesday. Thousands of people from different walks of life will attend various events. Some come to the music festival to escape the monotony of everyday living."
    FloydFest 13 kicked off on Wednesday. Thousands of people from different walks of life will attend various events. Some come to the music festival to escape the monotony of everyday living."

  • Ohio State marching band chief fired after probe

    Ohio State marching band chief fired after probe

    Thursday, July 24 2014 7:04 PM EDT2014-07-24 23:04:37 GMT

    Ohio State University has fired the director of its celebrated marching band amid allegations he knew about and ignored "serious cultural issues" including sexual harassment.

    Ohio State University fired the director of its celebrated marching band on Thursday after determining he ignored a "sexualized" culture of rituals including students being pressured to march in their underwear and...
  • House, Senate chairs offer competing bills on VA

    House, Senate chairs offer competing bills on VA

    Thursday, July 24 2014 7:03 PM EDT2014-07-24 23:03:53 GMT
    With Congress scheduled to recess in a week, the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee's chairman is offering to scale back a Senate-passed bill to improve health care services for veterans.
    With Congress scheduled to recess in a week, the chairmen of the House and Senate Veterans Affairs committees offered competing proposals Thursday to fix a veterans' health care program scandalized by long patient wait...
Powered by WorldNow

WSLS 10, P.O. Box 10
Roanoke, VA 24022-0010

Telephone: 540.981.9110
Fax: 540.343.3157
Email: news@wsls.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.