Jury finds man guilty of terror offences over lighting fires and pledging loyalty to Islamic State

A man who lit bushfires and filmed videos pledging his loyalty to Islamic State has been found guilty of terrorism-related offences, but his older brother will walk free after being cleared by a jury.

A Supreme Court jury found Aran Sherani, 20, guilty of carrying out acts in preparation for a terrorism offence. He had earlier pleaded guilty to being a member of a terrorist organisation.

Older brother Ari Sherani grinned and hugged his younger sibling in the court dock after the jury found him not guilty of attempting to engage in a terrorist attack. The jury also found Aran Sherani not guilty of two counts of the same offence.

The month-long trial centred on two small bushfires that were lit on Melbourne’s outskirts in 2021, and propaganda videos that showed Aran Sherani making threats and declaring his allegiance to Islamic State.

Prosecutors alleged the fires lit in Humevale and Kinglake West had the potential to endanger lives and cause serious damage to properties.

Read more: ABC News (Australia)