Amid strict security measures, Abu Walaa, aged 33 and from Iraq, appeared before the supreme court in the northern German town of Celle along with four others accused of belonging to a terrorist organization.
The Public Prosecution described Abu Walaa as ISIS top militant in Germany. Besides accusing him of recruiting militants for ISIS and fighting in Iraq more than once, the Public Prosecution also accused him of inducing killing via the internet.
The court has specified 29 dates for the trial hearings, about two days per week. The trial will be concluded in January of next year and the accused sentence might reach up to 10 years imprisonment.
Abu Walaa was personally supervising the recruiting and smuggling of soldiers to fight with ISIS while his four assistants were in charge of providing forged passports and the amount of money required for the trip as well as teaching “students” how to prepare and use explosives.
He had direct contact with ISIS leader and the security body affiliated with the group. Several nicknames were given to him during the past two years due to his activity as an extremist preacher. One of them is the “Faceless Preacher” because he doesn’t reveal his face in his videos on YouTube.
Der Spiegel newspaper reported that the legal negotiations will give a detailed vision on mechanisms followed by the extremist Islamic network, and this is what makes these hearings so important.
The accused arrived in Germany as an asylum seeker in 2001 and was arrested in November 2016. He has two wives and seven children. Spiegel reported that he had traveled and resided in a vague way in Iraq for a couple of times.