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8 people with possible ties to ISIS arrested in Philly, NY and LA – NBC10 Philadelphia

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrested eight men from Tajikistan with possible ties to ISIS in Philadelphia, New York and Los Angeles over the weekend, sources confirmed to NBC News on Tuesday.

Tajikistan is a country in Central Asia, surrounded by Afghanistan, China, Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

The men were on the radar of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force because of their possible links to IS, the sources said.

“In recent days, ICE agents have arrested several non-citizens at the direction of immigration authorities,” said a joint statement from the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. “The actions were conducted in close coordination with the FBI’s joint counterterrorism task force. The individuals arrested are being held in ICE custody awaiting deportation.”

Sources told NBC News that the eight men crossed the southern border into the United States and their criminal records were clean at the time. At least two of the men crossed the border in spring 2023 and one of the men used the CBP One app, developed by the Biden administration to allow migrants to book appointments to apply for asylum, officials said.

According to sources, the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force was aware of a possible terrorist threat from Central Europe and began surveillance of the eight men as part of the investigation. The FBI has been monitoring the men for several months and closely monitoring their activities, an official said.

None of the eight men are currently facing terrorism charges. However, the FBI has advised ICE that the men should be arrested because of possible ties to ISIS. The eight men were all arrested on immigration violations, sources told NBC News. They are currently detained and are facing deportation proceedings in immigration court. They could later be charged with terrorism, sources said.

Sources also told NBC News that the same intelligence that led to the surveillance and arrest of the eight men also led to the arrest of an Uzbek man in Baltimore for alleged ties to ISIS.

Authorities did not disclose where in Philadelphia, New York and Los Angeles the eight men were arrested.