Dad was just "stringing along" would-be terrorists with cash offers, court told

Crown Court
Crown Court

A dad who offered cash to would-be terrorists so they could travel to Syria has said he was just "stringing them along".

Mohammed Kahar is facing terrorism charges related to his online conversations and postings which claim he supported Islamic State and planned to fight alongside them.

Newcastle Crown Court heard the dad-of-six offered two contacts cash to help with their plans to join the terror group.

The 37-year-old married muslim told another online friend "the prophet says if you finance a fighter it is as if you fought".

But Kahar told jurors at his trial his conversations were just "part of his act" to convince IS supporters to engage with him and help with his religious research.

He told the court: "I offered two people money, just to get information out of them.

"I would never have paid someone over social media, who I have never met.

"I think my family needs the money. I never had any intention, I was just stringing them along."

The court heard Kahar had discussed with one contact, who used the name Slave of Allah and was based in India or somewhere on the subcontinent, how he would transfer cash to him via Western Union.

But he told jurors: "It was never my intention to pay it."

Kahar said he was familiar with Western Union because he had given a charity donation to a widowed mum using the service in the past.

Kahar said his online conversations about IS were simply to get information from internet users and there was no truth behind what he said about his intentions.

He added: "I just wanted to sound convincing, that's all it was.

"The bottom line is, I didn't pay anyone, I didn't even have any money to pay."

Kahar, of Burnville Road, Sunderland, denies 11 terrorism offences including preparation of terrorist acts, funding arranagement, support for a proscribed organisation, collection of information and dissemination of terrorist publications.

He denies all charges.

The trial continues.