ISIS Recruit who Used Bitcoin to Finance Group Might Bag 20 Years in Jail
A woman who bought bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies using fraudulently obtained credit cards before transferring the funds to ISIS has pleaded guilty to charges of offering financial support to a terrorist organization. She is Pakistani-American .
Zoobia Shahnaz made a couple of wire transactions last year to the Islamic terror outfit ISIS in China, Pakistan and Turkey according to court filings. Besides the financial contributions to ISIS, Shahnaz was also planning to travel to join the terror group in Syria. She was intercepted at the JFK Airport in New York on her way to Istanbul, Turkey – a common entry point for ISIS recruits from the West.
Part of the amount that she wired to ISIS fronts was obtained by fraudulent means. According to the prosecutors, between March and July last year, Shahnaz used ‘materially false pretenses, representations and promises’ to obtain a US$22,500 loan from a financial institution.
Shahnaz additionally got numerous charge cards from different money related establishments including Find, American Express, TD Bank and Pursue Bank by falsifications. She at that point utilized the Mastercards to purchase bitcoin and different digital forms of money worth around US$62,000 from trades before changing over them to money.
“She also fraudulently applied for and used over a dozen credit cards, which she used to purchase approximately $62,000 in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies online,” a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice read. “She then engaged in a pattern of financial activity, culminating in several wire transactions totaling over $150,000 to individuals and shell entities in Pakistan, China and Turkey that were fronts for ISIS.”
Shahnaz, who has been in guardianship since she was captured a year ago in December, could be condemned for up two decades in jail.