TERRORIST WANNDY'S LIKELY REPLACEMENT IDENTIFIED
Kedah man, 25, may have taken over as Malaysian IS leader
POLICE believe that Muhammad Fudhail Omar is expected to replace Muhammad Wanndy Mohamed Jedi as the top Malaysian Islamic State recruiter in Syria.
The 25 year old from Baling, Kedah, was among the first Malaysians to join the Ajnad As Syam movement back in 2014. He then travelled to Syria to join IS in 2015.
Wanndy was killed in a drone attack in Raqqa, Syria, on April 29.
Federal police Special Branch Counterterrorism Division principal assistant director Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay said Fudhail was highly influential in Malaysia.
“He was close with Wanndy. Those linked to Wanndy also have ties to Fudhail. Besides, Fudhail is about Wanndy’s age. Therefore, he can recruit people aged between 25 and 35.
“Those who have tried to reach Ustaz Lofti and Akel Zainal (Malaysian IS recruiters in Syria) via Facebook would be diverted to Fudhail’s account to be ‘brainwashed’ and recruited to join Ajnad As Syam,” he told the New Sunday Times yesterday.
Ayob said Fudhail’s brothers were arrested by police for channelling funds to him.
He said Fudhail was also believed to have instructed Malaysian IS members to kill policemen, and supported the plan to conduct a drone attack on Bukit Aman and Freemason Lodge in Bukit Jalil.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar earlier revealed this and the arrests of six Malaysians between May 23 and 26 over suspected ties to IS.
The six men, aged between 23 and 54, were hauled up following raids in four states.
Among them were Fudhail’s two cousins, who were arrested in Perak and Kedah.
“The 23-year-old religious schoolteacher and 29-year-old online businessman were held under suspicion of supporting and assisting IS in Syria through Muhammad Fudhail Omar and Wan Mohd Aquil Wan Zainal @ Akel Zainal.
“Fudhail ordered an IS militant in Sabah to launch a lone-wolf attack in Sandakan on Aug 4 last year.”
Also arrested was Muhammad Muzafa Arieff Junaidi, wanted for smuggling weapons for Malaysian-based IS activities.
“The 27-year-old cattle breeder surrendered on May 23 at Rantau Panjang, Kelantan.
“He infiltrated southern Thailand via Sungai Golok on March 22 to conceal an M4 Carbine rifle and a pistol,” Khalid said.
Muzafa’s arrest came after his accomplices, Nik Razanil Izuan Daud and Mohammad Sabri Mat Zain, were held in March. The duo have been sentenced to five years’ jail and six strokes of the rotan.
The third arrest was of a 54year-old retired army personnel in Kulim, Kedah, on May 25.
He is believed to have channelled RM20,000 to IS in Syria via several transactions.
One of the suspect’s sons, Afif Safwan Azuddin, was said to have joined the militants in Syria.
Another two men — a 31-yearold security guard and an unemployed 33-year-old — were arrested in Kedah and Selangor.
Six Malaysians have been arrested between May 23 and 26 over suspected ties to the Islamic State.