A jihadist fighter from Brussels has been sentenced to five years in prison in absentia after sending threatening messages about “shredded bodies” to a former education minister.
Brussels’ correctional court handed the maximum sentence to Soufian Defauwe and also ordered his immediate detention on charges of participating in terror-related activities.
Defauwe was also on trial for threatening Marie-Martine Schyns, the former minister of education for the Francophone Community, sending her a Facebook message in 2014 reading: “Boom, bodies shredded,” La Dernière Heure reports.
After receiving military training, Defauwe left Brussels for Syria in 2014, with his current whereabouts unknown since 2018.
He was also found to have distributed propaganda for the Islamic State terrorist organisation through social media, including images of Bilal Hadfi in Syria, who he is reported to have been friends with.
Hafi, a French national who lived in Brussels, left for Syria in 2015. Upon his return to Europe, he was one of three suicide bombers who blew themselves up in the Stade de France during the 2015 Paris attacks.