Australia

Australian-born accused terrorist Neil Prakash faces Darwin court

Key Points
  • Neil Prakash arrived in Darwin on Friday morning after being deported from Turkey.
  • The accused IS terrorist is facing six terrorism charges.
  • He could be sentenced to life in prison if found guilty.
Accused terrorist Neil Prakash has appeared in a Darwin court over charges that could see him behind bars for life.
The Melbourne-born former rapper is facing six terrorism charges after he allegedly joined and supported the self-proclaimed Islamic State in 2014.
The 31-year-old is also accused of travelling to Syria and undertaking hostile acts in 2016. Prakash could face a life sentence if found guilty.
Northern Territory Local Court Chief Judge Elizabeth Morris granted an extradition order to transfer Prakash from the NT to Victoria on or before 9 December.
He will remain in custody in Darwin until AFP and Victorian Police officers jointly take him into custody and escort him to Melbourne.

He is then expected to be charged by the Australian Federal Police Victorian Joint Counter Terrorism Team with a range of serious terrorism offences.

Neil Prakash arrived back in Australia on Friday after being deported by Turkish authorities. Source: Supplied / Australian Federal Police

Prakash, who appeared via video link from the Palmerston watch house, was handcuffed throughout the hearing. He declined legal representation and remained silent when Judge Morris asked him to confirm his identity.

Victorian detective senior constable Andrew Gibney told the court Prakash had been identified by distinct scars and a tattoo on his chest.
He was flown to the NT on a charter flight on Friday morning after being arrested and jailed in Turkey.

In 2016, he was wrongly thought to have been killed in a US military strike in the Iraqi city of Mosul. However, later the same year Australian officials confirmed he was still alive and had been arrested in Turkey.

Opposition leader Peter Dutton in the House of Representatives

Peter Dutton revoked Neil Prakash’s Australian citizenship in 2018, when he was home affairs minister. Source: AAP / Mick Tsikas

Former home affairs minister Peter Dutton revoked Prakash’s Australian citizenship in 2018 over his alleged IS participation and on the grounds he was Fijian.

Fijian immigration officials insisted Prakash, born to a Fijian father and a Cambodian mother, had never held nor sought citizenship and refused to take him into the country.
Prakash rose to prominence over his alleged links to several terror plots in Australia and his use of social media to lure potential recruits to IS.

He was also listed in IS documents as one of the group’s top recruiters.

File source

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