Late-2000s: FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force in Minnesota begins “Operation Rhino,” an investigation into terror recruitment in the Twin Cities, as nearly two dozen Somali-American men and women left to join Al-Shabab in Somalia.
March 2014: A circle of young friends begins meeting to discuss the Syrian conflict. One, Hanad Mohallim, travels to Syria, where he later dies fighting for ISIL.
May 2014: Guled Omar’s family stop him from getting in a rental car for a planned trip to California with two colleagues, one who later became a government informant and another who joined ISIL. Meanwhile, Abdi Nur becomes the only man later in the 10-defendant case to make it to the Middle East and join ISIL.
November 2014: Mohamed Farah and three others who were later charged are stopped by FBI agents in New York from boarding planes for Europe. Days earlier, Omar is stopped while trying to fly to California.
Late 2014-early 2015: Abdirahman Bashiir agrees to work with the FBI, recording conversations and later presenting his friends with a plot to purchase fake passports in California. The first two men in the case are arrested. One, Abdullahi Yusuf, pleads guilty and agrees to cooperate with prosecutors.
April 2015: Farah and Abdirahman Daud are arrested in a warehouse near the Mexican border after riding with Bashiir there to meet the fake passport source, who was an FBI agent. Omar and two others are also arrested in Minneapolis.
September 2015-April 2016: Five more men charged in the investigation — Zacharia Abdurahman, Hanad Musse, Abdirizak Warsame, Ahmed Farah and Hamza Ahmed — plead guilty and avoid trial.
June 2016: Omar, Farah and Daud are found guilty of conspiring to provide material support to ISIL and to murder abroad, among other charges, after a three-week trial.