Knoxville resident Benjamin Alan Carpenter, also known as “Abu Hamza,” was arrested on March 24, 2021, for “attempting to provide material support and resources” to the “designated foreign terrorist organization” the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS).
A federal grand jury indictment was returned on the case, thus causing his arrest, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).
On April 5, 2021, a detention hearing was held for the 31-year-old Carpenter, with the verdict still pending, and his trial is set for June 1, 2021, before United States District Judge Katherine A. Crytzer.
Carpenter is a US citizen and the alleged leader of Ahlut-Tawhid Publications, “an international organization dedicated to the translation and publication of pro-ISIS and official ISIS media in English.”
Carpenter further provided English-language translations of “ISIS media content” for use by ISIS to an individual he believed to be an ISIS associate, but who was actually a covert FBI employee.
The DOJ states that Carpenter’s case was investigated by the Knoxville Joint Terrorism Task Force, an agency comprised of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies.
John C. Demers, Assistant Attorney General for National Security at the U.S. Department of Justice, was one of the officials who announced Carpenter’s indictment and arrest.
The maximum potential sentence for activities such as Carpenter’s is prescribed by Congress. If Carpenter is convicted, he could receive a sentence of up to 20 years in prison.