A Sydney man who helped seven people enter Syria from Turkey to meet Aussie ISIS recruiter fighter Muhammad Ali Baryalei in 2013 has been classified as a terrorist although he said that he loved Australia.
Hamdi Alqudsi was found guilty in July during a hearing where he was proven to have helped the seven people but was only sentenced on Wednesday. He broke down in court while putting forth his side of the story. He said that he should have minded his own business and shouldn’t have helped the men at any cost. He raised his voice against his treatment as a terrorist in prison.
Baryalei is known for his previous battle for the Al-Nusra Front from June 2013 to October of the same year. Alqudsi regretted helping the seven people in crossing the borders, which has given him huge troubles. The 42-year-old told the court that he should have taken donations for Syrians from registered groups instead of lending those seven men his helping hands.
“As an Australian, I should have minded my own business,” he told the Supreme Court. “I love Australia, I always have.”
The court has sentenced him to a jail term of a maximum of 10 years each for his services to seven people. He was charged with intention of supporting hostile acts. The guilty claimed that he was unsure if those men even reached Syria safely or they were already dead.
The Israel Nation News reported that when prosecutor David Staehli asked Alqudsi on Wednesday if he knew that those men were leaving for Syria to engage in warfare, the guilty replied “yes.”
At the hearing, he said that the men wished to go to Syria to join the ISIS recruiter. During the court proceedings, it was found that a cache of intercepted call was made in which Baryalei mentioned the horrifying battle. The guilty said that he thought that the Daesh fighter would help civilians, hence he helped them.