MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Friends and relatives of six young men arrested for alleged recruitment into a foreign terror group believe the government’s case is thin.

Dozens of the men’s supporters packed into the Federal Courthouse in St. Paul for the arraignment hearing.

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“I was shocked, I was shocked,” Somali community advocate Omar Jamal stated.

A very surprised Jamal stood outside the courthouse to help a defendant’s father understand the severity of the government’s case.

Hamid Farah Yusef’s two sons, Adnan Farah and Mohamed Farah, are both charged with attempting to provide material support to a foreign terror organization.

According to the criminal complaint, the six young Minneapolis men were attempting to travel to Turkey to then join with ISIL forces in Syria.

When asked if his sons are innocent of the charges against them, Yusef responded, “Yes, that is what I believe.”

At the arraignments, the four young men very politely told the judge they understand the charges and, unable to afford their own attorneys, each asked to be represented by federal public defenders.

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While one Somali elder said outside the courthouse that the young men “made stupid mistakes,” others doubt the government’s case.

“The community and family members really believe that there’s some entrapment involved in this case,” Jamal said. “The facts will come out in details later.”

One group that’s worked tirelessly to fight the recruitment by terror groups is KaJoog in Minneapolis.

“I can’t imagine how the families and relatives really feel,” explained Mohamed Farah, KaJoog’s Executive Director.

KaJoog works to engage vulnerable young Somali men with arts and after-school diversions. He said the indictments, whether they are proven or not, show that more needs to be done.

“There’s a lot of young people out there not being engaged, and we all need to do a lot more to engage more young people and put them in the right direction,” Fara said.

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WCCO Radio’s Susie Jones spoke with Bob Fletcher of the Somali Justice Advocacy Center about the arrests.