Arafat Nagi, the Lackawanna man facing federal charges for supporting the Islamic state terror group ISIL, is "one bad apple, says Lackawanna Mayor Geoff Szymanski. The city is trying to move forward after once again being thrust in to the national spotlight.
Szymanski says the city has been fighting to clean up its image ever since the arrest of the Lackawanna Six in 2002. Szymanski says Nagi's arrest does not reflect on the city's Muslim community.
"One, crazy, lone nut job who has a very crazy record all by himself does not represent the entire community," Szymanski said.
"I'm glad the Feds were able to arrest him. Because anyone who wants to attack the United States is an enemy of the United States and us."
A search of the 44-year-old Nagi's home uncovered several combat-style knives and a sword. He also allegedly purchased body armor. And pledged his support to the Islamic state online. Szymanski says it's unfair to paint an entire community with one bad brush.
"We've been fighting for a long time trying to move away from the Lackawanna Six. Then all of a sudden some idiot tries to move to Syria," Szymanski said.
"That's not very welcoming. We're really trying to clean our city, clean our image."
The case against Nagi is going to a federal grand jury. He's being held without bail and is due back in court August 12th.