Indiana mom charged with providing material support to ISIS

August 23, 2018

Samantha Marie Elhassani, an American mom who followed her late husband to Syria, was charged Wednesday with providing material support to the Islamic State, better known by the acronym ISIS, the Department of Justice announced.

It is the second indictment the Justice Department has won against Mrs. Elhassani, who was accused in July of lying to FBI agents in her home state of Indiana.

In the most recent counts, prosecutors say Mrs. Elhassani provided material support and resources to the Islamic State, a designated terrorist organization. She is also charged with aiding and abetting to individuals who had provided themselves as personnel to the Islamic State.

The indictment alleges that she purchased tactical gear and provided funds to support ISIS sympathizers only identified as individuals A and B.

Syrian Democratic Forces arrested Mrs. Elhassani and transferred her to U.S. custody in July. She was captured with her four minor children, who are U.S. citizens. They were most recently in the care of the Indiana Department of Child Services, according to a July press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Indiana.

Mrs. Elhassani’s husband, Moussaka Elhassani, was a sniper for the Islamic state who was killed in a drone attack last year.

In an April CNN interview, Mrs. Elhassani said her husband previously worked at a delivery company in Elkhart, Indiana. He had planned to move his family back to his native Morocco but became radicalized during a family vacation to Turkey, she told the network.

“Once we get to Sanliurfa [Turkey] everything changed,” she said in the interview. “I was like a prisoner in the room.”

Mrs. Elhassani also said she felt the need to go to Syria so she could remain with their children.

Update hourly