Radical British YouTube preacher turns sights on young Australians

Ben Brennan

A radical British man who has been arrested over alleged terror offences has turned his sights on young Australians.

Abu Haleema had his passport cancelled by the British government last year but his reach over social media has allowed him to turn push his YouTube rants on Australians.

Mohammed Shamsuddin (top) and Abu Haleema joyfully watch executions in an ISIS propaganda video. Source: Channel 4

Fairfax Media reports Haleema has been building a following with young fringe-dwellers, including some linked to a group associated with the Parramatta shooting of police employee Curtis Cheng.

According to Fairfax, counter-terrorism authorities are aware of Haleema’s online influence but can do little beside monitor his activities.

"This is the problem, a lot of the influence is coming from overseas via the internet," one officer told the outlet.

While Haleema’s rants have generally been confined to British and Middle Eastern issues, in recent weeks he has released videos targeting moderate Islamic leaders in Australia.

Sydney sheikhs Shady Alsuleiman and Wesam Charkawi have been on his agenda recently.

He also took issue with Liverpool imam Sheikh Abu Adnan for hosting Bankstown policeman Danny Miqati in a mosque where he gave a talk against domestic violence

In his videos, Haleema presents himself in urban settings as he unleashing fast-paced tirades towards the camera.

Often seen in tunnels covered in graffiti, his rambling diatribes can prove hard to follow.

Haleema has become a prominent name in Britain recently. Aside from his terrorism charges, he has also featured in a recent Channel 4 documentary titled, The Jihadis Next door.

Cameras followed the unqualified and self-styled online preacher for two years before the program’s release. He is one of several such homegrown extremists featured in the documentary.

In one seen, Haleema is shown with another man laughing as they watch videos of ISIS terrorists executing captives in Syria.