2017-07-13 10:12
Korean-American US soldier arrested in Hawaii, accused of 'pledging allegiance' to ISIS
By Lee Han-soo


Ikaika Erik Kang / Yonhap
A Korean-American U.S. Army sergeant was arrested for providing classified military documents and training to ISIS, according to records the U.S. District Court unsealed in Honolulu, Hawaii, Monday.

Ikaika Erik Kang, 34, a sergeant first class in the 25th Infantry Division at the U.S. Army Pacific Command, was arrested by an FBI SWAT team on terrorism charges Saturday.

Kang was deployed extensively in Iraq, Afghanistan and South Korea and has been awarded several commendations. He is known to have enlisted in the U.S. Army after the Sep. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

“Kang gave classified military documents to people he believed would give them to ISIS,” Paul Delacourt, a FBI special agent in charge of the Hawaii bureau, said. “But none of them got to the organization.”

When the FBI searched Kang’s computer, it allegedly found 18 confidential military documents, 16 of which were still classified.

Kang, who had the U.S. army’s highest level of combat instruction training, allegedly videotaped himself doing combat sessions before passing the information to a person he believed was an ISIS member.

It was further revealed that the FBI sent an undercover agent to gather evidence against Kang.

During this time, Kang allegedly made pro-terrorist and racial comments to the agent.

“The shooter did what he had to do,” Kang allegedly told the agent during their discussion of the Pulse Nightclub attack that happened in Orlando, Florida, in June last year.

He also said Adolf Hitler was “right” and he believed in the mass killing of Jews.

The FBI finally arrested Kang after he allegedly swore loyalty to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Meanwhile, Kang’s lawyer Birney Bervar said his client suffers from service-related mental illness, which the government was aware of but ignored.

He did not elaborate.

The U.S. Army believes Kang was radicalized in 2016.


corea022@ktimes.com