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Iraqi Imam Convicted of Running Jihadist Network in Germany
Iraqi defendant Abu Walaa, described as the Islamic State group's de facto leader in Germany, knocks on a glass pane as he arrives at court for the verdict of his trial on Feb. 24, 2021 in Celle, Germany. (Julian Stratenschulte / POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Iraqi Imam Convicted of Running Jihadist Network in Germany

An Iraqi imam was sentenced on Wednesday to 10 years and six months in jail by a German court. Ahmad Abdulaziz Abdullah Abdullah, also known as Abu Walaa, is said to be the leader of the Islamic State in Germany.

He was convicted in state court in in Celle in northern Germany of running a jihadist network that radicalized young people and helped them make their way to Iraq and Syria. The trial began in September 2017.

Abu Walaa, 37, preached at the Fussilet Mosque in Berlin. He is accused of radicalizing a failed asylum seeker who killed 12 people at a Christmas market last year in Berlin.

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