Man facing ISIS-related terror charges has criminal history in Calgary

CALGARY – One of three Ottawa men charged with terrorism in connection with ISIS recruitment is also a wanted man in Calgary. Khadar Hassan Khalib, 23, was charged in September 2012 for shoplifting under $5,000 at a Bay store location in the Calgary area, and failed to attend his scheduled October court appearance. A warrant is still out for his arrest, according to court documents obtained by Global News.

Khalib was charged in absentia Tuesday with leaving Canada to participate in, counselling a person to participate in and conspiring to participate or to contribute in an activity of a terrorist group. RCMP said he travelled to Syria to fight with ISIS, also known as the Islamic State.

Khalib was a former Algonquin College student in Ottawa, where reports suggest he was a member of the college’s Muslim Association.

A Google + page in his name shows a September post quoting al-Qaeda founder Abdullah Azzam: “Death is only once, so let it be jihad.” The page also features videos of readings from the Quran (the religious text of Islam) and Islamic lectures.

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A Facebook page in his name changed to the name AbdulBaqi Hanif—meaning “servant of the everlasting” and “true believer” in Arabic, according to the Ottawa Citizen. That page has since been taken down. The Citizen reported his page included photos of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, armed jihadists and the black and white flag associated with ISIS.

Sources tell Global News he also went by the last name Khalid.

Also charged Tuesday were Awso Peshdary, 25—in custody in Ottawa—and John Maguire, 24, who appeared in an extremist recruiting video that urged Muslims to launch attacks against Canadians last year. Reports suggest Maguire may have been killed in battle, but police say they lack any “conclusive evidence confirming that he is deceased.”

“These charges speak to our ability to tackle a threat that is multifaceted and constantly evolving,” assistant RCMP commissioner James Malizia said in a statement.

With files from Nancy Hixt, Vassy Kapelos and The Canadian Press