Authorities said they arrested an 18-year-old Houston male on charges of providing material support to the terrorist organization ISIS.
Kaan Sercan Damlarkaya, a U.S. citizen, is also reportedly facing charges for unlawfully distributing information on how to make explosives.
The criminal complaint, which remained sealed until Damlarkaya appeared before a federal judge on earlier this year, also alleged he tried to visit Syria on at least two occasions to fight for ISIS, but failed each time.
According to court documents, Damlarkaya believed he began communicating with the group in August of this year, when, in fact, his contact occurred between him and an undercover FBI agent posing as a terrorist fighter.
Court documents show the young man wrote of his “dream” to become a martyr by committing a terrorist attack.
A statement from the U.S. Department of Justice alleged Damlarkaya provided the undercover agent with information on “how to build an AK-47 or AR-15 assault rifle from readily-available parts in order to avoid detection from authorities.”
The statement also alleged the young man provided them with a formula for the explosive Triacetone Triperoxide (TATP), as well as instructions on how to place the explosive in a pressure cooker filled with shrapnel to create the maximum number of civilian casualties.
FBI agents arrested Damlarkaya on Friday at his family’s home near Briar Forest and North Kirkwood on the city’s west side, where he reportedly lives with his parents and older brother.
Neighbors who knew the family told a Houston TV station they are surprised by the arrest.
Jonathon Scott said he became acquainted with the family after Hurricane Harvey:
“When I came back the neighborhood was still flooded, and I kinda rafted over, and they (were) hanging out, and I had a conversation with them,” Scott told the TV station. “It’s kind of shocking to hear a teenage boy would want to harm other people like that, but it’s a sign of the times.”