Woman known as 'Jihad Jane' pleads not guilty in US court

A 46-year-old American woman who called herself "JihadJane" on internet sites pleaded not guilty in a Philadelphia court on Thursday to the charges against her, including involvement in a "conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists".


AFP - An American woman who called herself "JihadJane" pleaded not guilty Thursday in a Philadelphia court to recruiting terrorists.

Pennsylvania resident Colleen LaRose, 46, is charged with "conspiracy to provide material support to terrorists," among other charges.

She allegedly sought both male and female recruits, raised money and agreed to murder a Swedish cartoonist, pledging "only death will stop me," the indictment charges.

The judge ordered LaRose's trial to start May 3. She is held without bail and faces up to life in prison if found guilty.

The petite blonde, who had her hair in dreadlocks and pony tail, smiled and appeared relaxed during the less than 10 minute arraignment hearing.

Born in 1963, LaRose lived in Texas before moving to a community outside the northeast US city of Philadelphia.

Divorced, LaRose was apparently unemployed, authorities said.

She is accused of recruiting women "who had passports and the ability to travel to and around Europe in support of violent jihad," and of having stolen a US passport "and transferred or attempted to transfer it in an effort to facilitate an act of international terrorism."

The indictment claims she also received two messages in March 2009 from an individual in a South Asian country instructing her to kill an unnamed Swedish resident.

"Kill him... this is what i say to u," the indictment quotes one message as saying. "Kill (the individual) in a way that the whole Kufar (non-believer) world get frightened," the second said.

"I will make this my goal till i achieve it or die trying," LaRose allegedly responded.

LaRose was identified on the Internet by the monikers "Fatima LaRose" and "JihadJane."

A MySpace page under the name "JihadJane" features a biography in which she describes herself as having "reverted to Islam."


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