A 22-year-old soldier from the U.S. Army pleaded guilty to trying to help ISIS ambush and murder his fellow soldiers stationed in the Middle East.
U.S. Army Soldier in Support of ISIS
22-year-old U.S. Army soldier Cole Bridges, who also goes by the name Cole Gonzales, from Stow, Ohio, is now sentenced to 40 years in prison following his crimes. Bridges pleaded guilty in New York’s federal court in an attempt to provide intel to ISIS. The intel provided by Bridges would be used to attack U.S. troops in the Middle East.
Bridges enlisted in the Army around September 2019. In the same year, he researched the propaganda of jihadists online, where he also spread his support for ISIS. According to prosecutors, around October 2020, Bridges started to communicate with an ISIS supporter in contact with actual members of the terror group who was actually an undercover FBI agent. According to the undercover agent, Bridges provided sensitive information and even training directions for ISIS fighters, including ideal targets within New York. Following his crime, Bridges was arrested last January 2021.
Damian Williams, U.S. Attorney of the Southern District of New York stated that Bridges’ traitorous actions betrayed his comrades and, ultimately, his country. Williams also thanked the authorities and prosecutors for their combined efforts to put Bridges to justice.
Williams’ office stated that the U.S Army Counterintelligence, Bridges’ division, which was the U.S. Army Third Infantry Division, Air Force Office of Special Investigations, the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force in New York, as well as other branches of the military, all worked together to apprehend Bridges.