A 17-year-old British girl of Moroccan heritage allegedly married an Islamic State fighter online and prepared to receive arms from the terror group for an attack in the UK.
The teenager arranged to “receive weapons in order to conduct an attack in the UK”, as well as, “instructions on how train and use weapons” and “assistance in completing [the] plan”, police said in a statement.
The girl, from Coventry, and her Syria-based ‘husband’ married on Skype and the weapons she plotted to obtain included hand grenades and a firearm, Sky News reports.
Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard how she had planned to travel to Syria in August last year. When her plan was thwarted, however, she married the militant via the online calling service in September.
According to the Guardian, the girl was of Moroccan heritage and her Islamic State ‘husband’ is now believed to be dead, killed in a drone strike in April.
— Metropolitan Police (@metpoliceuk) July 26, 2017
Her lawyer, Vajahat Sharif, reportedly indicated she would plead not guilty to the terror offenses she is charged with. Wearing a Nike tracksuit, she only spoke to confirm her name and age in court.
District Judge Tan Ikram remanded her in custody to appear at the Old Bailey on the 11th of August, when she will also appear there in relation to another terror offense she was previously charged with.
Last week, Metropolitan Police commissioner Cressida Dick said: “Six attack planning plots were thwarted in the last four months alone, and we can expect that figure to rise.”
She added: “The bulk of this domestic threat seems to be from those who are inspired by overseas networks, though there have undoubtedly been some who have been more directly enabled by them also, and we should not assume that attempts by senior leaderships of overseas groups to direct more or less sophisticated UK attacks have gone away.”
The UK’s terror threat level remains at severe, and a series of three successful attacks have claimed lives in Britain since the 22nd of March.