Federal agents actively investigating Hoosiers with potential ties to ISIS

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INDIANAPOLIS (April 12, 2016) – Federal investigators are looking into the possibility a number of individuals living in Central Indiana are actively supporting the terror group ISIS.

The acknowledgement came from U.S. Attorney Josh Minkler Tuesday in a wide-ranging interview with CBS4, including the scheduled visit from U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch on Wednesday.

“The threat from ISIS is homegrown extremism,” Minkler said. “If you materially support ISIS, either by seeking to travel to work with ISIS or if you materially support ISIS by sending money, that is a case that we will federally prosecute.”

Minkler would only acknowledge “several ongoing active investigations,” adding his office is working on a daily basis with the FBI and national intelligence officials.

“They are aware of intelligence information, and they’re aware of information that can be used in a federal prosecution,” he said. “If we determine that an individual is materially supporting terrorism, they will be prosecuted in this district.”

In November, FBI Indianapolis Special Agent in Charge Jay Abbott, told CBS4 its monitoring had been increased in Indiana after recent terrorist attacks.

“There are those that have risen to that threshold that we have cases on,” Abbott said in the interview.

Minkler said Tuesday, as with many local law enforcement agencies nationwide, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department is providing resources to the FBI to help monitor current investigations.

“Very often for the tips for federal cases, the initial informants for federal cases all come from the police department,” Minkler said.

Lynch will profile IMPD’s wellness and safety program Wednesday, as part of a six-city nationwide community policing tour, meant to identify best practices to build better police and community relations.

“We have a police department that takes care of its police officers,” Minkler said. “And only when a police department takes care of its police officers can that department take care of their community.”

Lynch will meet with IMPD recruits, host a roundtable discussion on officer safety and wellness and attend an IMPD East District roll call.

“It used to be that issues like this weren’t at the forefront, particularly emotional issues,” Minkler said. “It was rub some dirt on it, it’ll be fine. Now we have a generation that is brave enough to talk about the stresses of their job and ask for help.”

Lynch is expected to highlight IMPD’s success in wellness and safety, its implications on public safety and role in major federal investigations.

“It helps investigate high-level cases,” Minkler said. “And it helps prosecute  high-level cases.”

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