Man who allegedly hoped to join ISIS arrested at John Wayne Airport

John Wayne Airport

Travelers pass through John Wayne Airport in 2011. A man who allegedly told federal agents he was traveling overseas hoping to join Al Qaeda breakaway group ISIS was arrested at the airport July 2.

(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

An Orange County man who allegedly told federal agents that he was going overseas to help the Al Qaeda breakaway group ISIS is set to be arraigned Monday on charges of lying on a U.S. passport application.

Adam Dandach,  also known as Fadi Fadi Dandach, was about to board a flight at John Wayne airport when he was stopped by the FBI’s Orange County Joint Terrorism Task Force on July 2, according to a federal indictment.

The flight was headed to Istanbul, Turkey, from where Dandach reportedly intended to travel to Syria, authorities said.

The O.C. Weekly first reported the arrest.


Dandach, whose age was not provided but who was born in 1994, allegedly told federal agents he was traveling to Syria to pledge his allegiance to ISIS, the terror group that has attacked government and military officials in Iraq and Syria. The group is now known as Islamic State.

Dandach allegedly told investigators “he would assist ISIS with anything that ISIS asked him to do, and that he believed the killing of U.S. soldiers are justified killings,” according to federal court documents.

On June 17, Dandach applied for an expedited replacement passport. In the application Dandach wrote that he had mistakenly thrown away the original when he was cleaning a drawer filled with old papers and folders.

But authorities said that his mother had hidden his passport in December after Dandach told her about his plans to fly overseas on Christmas 2013.


In addition to being charged with one count of falsifying information on a U.S. passport application, Dandach is being charged with using a passport secured by making false statements.

Dandach is scheduled to be arraigned Monday morning in federal court in Santa Ana. He’s being held without bail. 

For Orange County news, follow @AdolfoFlores3.

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