The FBI has arrested a Minneapolis college student after keeping him under tight surveillance for weeks, worried he might try to join one of the world’s most brutal terrorist groups in Syria.

Court documents filed in the case offer a rare glimpse into exactly how the FBI has been tracking such radicalized Americans, who are increasingly being recruited to join the Islamic State – or ISIS – the Iraq-based group that has been wreaking havoc in the region.

But the case also highlights how difficult it has been to stop those who’ve been radicalized from actually making it overseas – no sooner had the FBI learned another Minnesota man was also looking to join ISIS than they learned he had already slipped out of the United States that morning.

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