Florida man sentenced to 20 years in prison for attempting to provide material support to ISIS

A Florida man has been sentenced to 20 years in federal prison and 15 years of supervised release for attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, also known as ISIS or ISIL.

Romeo Xavier Langhorrne, 32, of St. Augustine, pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to provide material support to ISIS on May 13, 2021, in the Middle District of Florida.

The U.S. Attorney's Office said in a news release announcing the sentencing that Langhorne "pledged his allegiance" to ISIS in 2014, and posted ISIS-produced videos on social media in 2018 and 2019. He also reportedly expressed an interest in making a video to demonstrate "the making and use of a deadly explosive, triacetone triperoxide," also known as TATP. 

Officials said Langhorne began communicating with an undercover FBI employee who was posting as an ISIS member about his video plans, and how to allegedly keep it on the internet – "intended for educational purposes" – and avoid it being taken down by social media platforms, according to the release.

"However, Langhorne informed the UCE that his true purpose in making and distributing the video was to arm ISIS adherents and others with knowledge of how to make TATP and use it for terrorism-related purposes in support of ISIS," the release said.

The FBI created a video that matched Langhorne's requests but featured a chemical formula that would not create an explosion unbeknownst to him. After the video was sent, Langhorne uploaded it to the internet, officials said.

Langhorne was arrested at his home in Roanoke, Virginia on November 15, 2019, where he admitted to uploading the video.

"The willingness of this dangerous individual to go to great lengths to harm innocent Americans was always very real," said FBI Jacksonville Special Agent in Charge Sherri E. Onks in a statement. "But through hard work and determination, the FBI Jacksonville Joint Terrorism Task Force successfully disrupted his plan early on, and averted a threat to the safety of our community. Moving forward, we remain as vigilant as ever in our efforts to protect the public from others who support terrorist organizations, and we encourage the public to help us by reporting suspicious activity to law enforcement."