Five young men have been charged with terrorism and have faced life in prison for planning to sail to Indonesia to join jihadi groups in Syria, Australian police reportedly said late Saturday. The news comes as Australia continues to fight homegrown radicals and citizens traveling to the Middle East to join jihadi organizations.
The men, who are in their twenties and early thirties, bought a 23-foot boat and travelled 1,765 miles from Melbourne to Queensland state where they planned to set sail to Indonesia, the Australian Federal Police said, according to Agence France-Presse.
"The men... were each charged with one count of making preparations for incursions into foreign countries for the purpose of engaging in hostile activities," the police said, in a statement Saturday. "The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment."
According to Australian Broadcasting Corporation, one of the five men was notorious Australian Islamic preacher Musa Cerantonio, who was detained in the Philippines in 2014 and deported for reportedly urging people to join jihadi groups in Iraq and Syria. The report also named two of the other men as Shayden Thorne and Kadir Kaya.
Australia estimates that there are around 110 Australians fighting alongside the Islamic State group in the Middle East.