Frankfurt: young IS returnee sentenced to probation – judge appreciates her remorseful confession

Almost four years after returning from Syria, a woman has been sentenced to two years' probation in Frankfurt for membership of the terrorist organization Islamic State (IS).

Frankfurt: young IS returnee sentenced to probation – judge appreciates her remorseful confession

Almost four years after returning from Syria, a woman has been sentenced to two years' probation in Frankfurt for membership of the terrorist organization Islamic State (IS). She promoted the association from within, said the presiding judge when the judgment was pronounced on Monday before the Higher Regional Court. The verdict is also a violation of the duty of care because the 33-year-old took her young sons to Syria and exposed them to the dangers of the civil war there. As a condition of probation, the woman, who comes from central Hesse, has to work 300 hours in a non-profit capacity, and a probation officer will also take care of her.

The woman, who grew up in middle-class circumstances, had already been interested in Islam as a teenager. Soon she dressed in long robes and a headscarf. She graduated from high school with an average grade of 1.6. Soon after, she married a Muslim and lived strictly according to the rules of her new religion. Her sons were born in 2012 and 2013.

In 2016, she and her children were smuggled to Syria via Turkey using forged papers, where her husband was an IS fighter. According to the verdict, she immediately joined the terrorist organization. The IS paid her husband, gave money for the sons and the family's apartment. She herself sold homemade sweets at markets according to IS specifications.

When the bombings increased, the family fled. Her husband later died in an air raid in front of the children. "She has grossly violated her duties as a mother," the judge said. During her escape she lived with her children in burrows and in barn-like buildings at times. The five of them fled on a motorbike and on foot through the desert. In vain did the woman look for smugglers to take her abroad. She was finally brought to Germany from a refugee camp together with her children in November 2019 as part of a return campaign organized by the Federal Foreign Office.

The court recognized her "reflected and remorseful confession," the judge said. Today she is about to complete her studies and lives in stable circumstances. The woman's lawyer said the verdict would be accepted. The federal prosecutor's office made no statement about the possible filing of an appeal.

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