Gang Indicted for Looting Churches to Fund ISIS

A Cologne court indicted eight men for robbing German churches and schools to fund Islamic State terrorism.

According to the report released Tuesday, the gang stole 19,000 euros worth of goods from churches and schools in Cologne and Siegen from 2011 to 2014.

Chief prosecutor Nadja Gudermann charges that the suspect stole offering boxes, crosses, chalices and various other objects "dedicated to church services and religious worship."

The men were also accused of stealing money and laptops from schools, the German news agency Deutsche Welle reported.

According to the report, funds from the burglaries were used to support Islamist terror groups in Syria. The amount of money that allegedly reached the terror groups remains unclear and will not be brought up during the trial.

The prosecution says the Moroccan man who led the gang posted YouTube videos encouraging Muslims to join ISIS.

The YouTube video, posted in the German section, shows an Islamic State flag, a court spokesman said. The 26-year-old gang leader traveled to Syria to train at an ISIS military camp, DW reports.

Three of the gang members will be tried in Dusseldorf on charges of supporting a foreign terrorist organization.

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