Married couple plead guilty to trying to join ISIS

The Justice Department said Monday that a married couple has pleaded guilty to trying to join ISIS. FIle Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI
The Justice Department said Monday that a married couple has pleaded guilty to trying to join ISIS. FIle Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo

Sept. 13 (UPI) -- A married couple has pleaded guilty to attempting to provide support to ISIS after trying to travel the Middle East to join the terrorist organization in its fight.

The Justice Department said Arwa Muthana, 30, of Hoover, Ala., pleaded guilty Monday to one count of attempting to provide material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization. Her husbanded, 21-year-old James Bradley of the Bronx, N.Y., had pleaded guilty to the same charge on Friday.


Both are scheduled to be sentenced in early February when they could each receive up to 20 years' imprisonment.

"In planning their support, Bradley and Muthana collected and distributed jihadist propaganda, including videos of Osama Bin Laden, and even chillingly expressed their desire to 'take out' American military cadets," U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said Monday in a statement.

"Just one day after the anniversary of 9/11, today's prosecution of Bradley and Muthana exemplifies that the resolve of this office and our law enforcement partners will never waiver, and we will never forget."

The pair were arrested on March 31 of last year in Newark, N.J., as they walked a gangplank to board a cargo ship they believed would take them to Yemen where they hoped to join the ranks of ISIS.


According to court documents, Bradley had paid an undercover agent $1,000 in cash to cover the costs of their trip aboard the cargo ship.

After being arrested, Muthana waived her right to remain silent and told authorities in an interview that she was willing to kill Americans if was Allah's order.

The court documents state that Bradley and Muthana had discussed and planned to travel to the Middle East to join ISIS since before they were married in January of 2021.

The authorities also said that Bradley expressed violent extremist views and a desire to join ISIS since at least 2019. He said that he wanted to leave for the Middle East to join ISIS' fight, and if he could not he wanted to conduct an attack in the United States.

Prosecutors state that Bradley told undercover law enforcement in May 2020 that he suggested U.S. Military Academy West Point as a target for his attack.

In January the next year, he also mentioned a New York State university where Reserve Officer Training Corps cadets often trained as another potential target.

"Bradley stated that he could use his truck in an attack and that he along with Muthana could take all of the ROTC cadets 'out,'" the Justice Department said.


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