Montreal man linked to ISIS arrested on terrorism-related charges in Turkey
Wassim Boughadou among young Quebecers who fled province to fight against Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria
One of the young Quebecers who left the province to fight in Syria has been arrested in Turkey on terrorism-related charges, according to media reports in that country.
Wassim Boughadou, a 25-year-old Montreal man of Algerian ancestry, was taken into custody after boarding an airplane in Adana, Turkey, near the Syrian border on March 10.
According to local news agencies, he was interrogated for 13 days. He is accused of being a member of, and helping to finance, Islamic State militants.
"To protect the privacy of the individual concerned, further details on this case cannot be released," Austin Jean said.
Boughadou was among 10 young Quebecers reported by Radio-Canada's investigate program Enquête to have secretly joined militants in Syria to fight against the Bashar al-Assad regime.
The group was made up of friends who often gathered at a Montreal-area shooting range to practise before seven of them left for the Middle East between the summers of 2012 and 2013.
Subject of RCMP kidnapping probe
Boughadou has also been the target of an investigation by the RCMP.
According to Radio-Canada sources, the investigation led by the Mounties is ongoing, but it's unclear if Boughadou could be extradited to Canada.
Investigators suspect Boughadou was among a group of men linked to the kidnapping and extortion of two Americans in Syria — Theo Padnos and Matthew Schrier.
Padnos, who was held hostage for almost two years after being kidnapped in 2014, said he believes Boughadou was among his captors.
"I was delighted to meet some young Canadians because I've lived in Montreal, so I brought up places, parks in Montreal, to orient the conversation to say, 'Hey, I'm not that different from you guys. How could you do this to me? How could you let this happen to me?,'"Padnos told CBC News.
But, he said, they were in "jihad mode."
"That was their attitude, and nothing I said to them could have saved my life," he said.
with files Salimah Shivji