Orange County man sentenced to 30 years in prison for trying to help ISIS

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Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Muhanad Badawi is depicted in an earlier court drawing.
Muhanad Badawi is depicted in an earlier court drawing.

SANTA ANA, Calif. (KABC) -- An Orange County man convicted of attempting to help an Islamic terrorist group was sentenced to 30 years in prison on Wednesday.

Muhanad Badawi, 25, received the same punishment as his co-defendant Nader Elhuzayel, also 25, who was sentenced last month.

While in custody, Badawi stopped eating and dropped from 140 to 109 pounds before a judge ordered him force-fed last December.

The two were found guilty in June of supporting a terrorist group. Both men allegedly wanted to die fighting for ISIS abroad. Family members deny the claims.

Authorities say Badawi and Elhuzayel concocted a scheme for Elhuzayel to fly to the Middle East to fight for ISIS and that Badawi lent him his debit card to buy a one-way plane ticket to Israel with a six-hour layover in Turkey.

Officials said the men shared their support for ISIS in conversation and on social media, sharing photos of "unbelievers" being beheaded and expressing wishes to die as martyrs.

Both men were arrested last year.

Authorities say the men did not plan any attacks on the U.S.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.