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Tennessee man accused of aiding ISIS

KNOXVILLE, Tennessee – A Tennessee man played a key role in distributing propaganda in English for the Islamic State group, federal prosecutors said Monday.

Benjamin Alan Carpenter, 31, of Knoxville, has been in custody since his arrest on March 24, according to a press release from the Office of Acting U.S. Attorney Francis M. Hamilton III. A detention hearing was held on Monday, but a judge did not immediately decide whether he should be free pending trial.

Carpenter has been accused in a federal indictment of attempting to provide material support and resources to Daesh.

Carpenter, also known as Abu Hamza, provided English translations of ISIS media content to someone he believed to be associated with ISIS, prosecutors said. The person was actually a secret FBI employee, officials said.

Authorities said Carpenter was the leader of Ahlut-Tawhid Publications, an international organization that broadcasts pro-ISIS material in English.

A trial is scheduled for June 1. If found guilty, he faces up to 20 years in prison.

It was not known if Carpenter was represented by a lawyer who could comment on his behalf.

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