Terrorism has now spread its tentacles in tourist hotspot Singapore as well, with an ISIS sympathizer, Imran Kassim being convicted on charges of financing the ISIS. Imran, 36, had last year been charged under the Terrorism (Suppression of Financing) Act, 2002.
The Act facilitates for convicts to be imprisoned for not more than 10 years and to be fined a sum of not more than $500,000, or both. Imran Kassim is the first Singaporean to have been convicted under this Act on Tuesday, with him proudly proclaiming that he indeed transferred money to the ISIS, as he sympathized with their cause.
“I do admit to making the transfer, and I did it to benefit the Islamic State,” Kassim stated. Imran had been detained under the Internal Security Act since August 2017 and was issued a detention order for intending to take part in armed violence overseas.
What is however important here is that Imran Kassim stated in open court that he did not recognize Singaporean law, and that the only law he followed was Sharia. As such, he stated that no national law had been broken by him.
Imran was representing himself in court, and was not supported by a legal team after a legal firm earlier backing him, discharged themselves from the same. After a short trial that lasted only a few hours, District Judge Seah Chi-Ling found Imran guilty based on his statements to officers, his admissions in court, and a remittance advice and receipt. The man was then sentenced to 33 months of imprisonment.
Imran Kassim had sent $450 to a man named Mohamad Alsaied Alhmidan in Turkey on Oct 31, 2014. Imran admitted in his statements that he had sent the money in response to a Facebook post, as he believed the donation would benefit the page holder, whose work was to get support for the Islamic State. He said that he donated because it would “help spread support for IS”, gather more supporters for IS and raise awareness for IS.
The menace of Islamic extremism and terrorism is rapidly spreading and infiltrating regions which have historically been immune and secure of the same. How Imran proudly stated that the only law which he obliged to was Sharia, despite being a citizen of Singapore and enjoying all the perks of his citizenship is a reminder that de-radicalisation must be pre-emptive in nature, to ensure that nobody accepts the Sharia and Hadith as gospels by which one must live.