A mother from Bradford has admitted trying to take her children to live with Islamic State in Syria so they could grow up under Sharia law.
The woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, pleaded guilty to child abduction after telling her husband she was simply taking the children to a birthday party. She fled to Heathrow Airport, however, and took a flight to Istanbul.
She was detained by Turkish authorities when she touched down after her husband alerted the police.
Yesterday, she pleaded guilty at Leeds Crown Court to two counts of child abduction.
Speaking for the prosecution, Andrew Semple said the woman had told her husband she wanted her children to grow up under Sharia law, and he told her that many countries implement the system.
“She countered there was only one that properly followed Islamic law and that was Islamic State,” Mr Semple added.
The Daily Mail reports that the woman was described as a “pillar of the community” who had no previous history of criminality. However, earlier this year her family noticed her becoming “more overtly religious”, telling them she wanted to give up her financial job as charging interest is “un-Islamic”.
On 9 October this year, her husband became suspicious of her behaviour and checked her phone to discover that she had arranged to travel to Iraq.
She left home the next day, telling him she was taking the children to a birthday party and then to the local mosque. However, he found that no party had been planned and immediately contacted the police, but they were too late to stop her at the airport.
They informed Turkish authorities, however, who detained them on arrival.
She later told police she had intended to travel to Raqqa, the de facto capital of the Islamic State terror group, and then ultimately to the city of Mosul in Iraq.
The woman is due to be sentenced later today and faces up to seven years in jail.