German prosecutors said on Wednesday they had arrested seven people accused of collecting money to send to the Islamic State group in Syria.
The four Germans, a German-Moroccan dual national, one Kosovar and a Turkish citizen, were accused of belonging “to an international network that supported the terrorist activities of the Islamic State in Syria through financial donations”, the federal prosecutor’s office said.
Starting in 2020, the group used the Telegram messaging service to appeal for contributions, prosecutors said.
Their network included financial intermediaries who “collected money or set up accounts” for the donations.
From these accounts the money was transferred to IS members in Syria or to designated middlemen.
The funds were used to support IS members detained in northern Syrian camps and in some cases helped finance their escape, prosecutors said.
In total, €65 000 ($69 367) were collected through the network.
The seven suspects were said to have acted as financial intermediaries and played a “central role” in the fundraising group, prosecutors said.
The arrests were part of a nationwide swoop against people who had made donations to IS via the group.
Over 1 000 police officers searched over 90 properties across Germany on Wednesday.
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