Once a member of ISIS, Calgary woman is now a target, court told


Kevin Martin

ISIS has put a bounty on the life of a Calgary woman the Crown fears could be re-radicalized after joining the terrorism organization eight years ago, her lawyer said Friday.

Defence counsel Yoav Niv, in successfully seeking a publication ban on the woman’s identity, said she suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and fears for her safety.

Niv told provincial court Judge Lloyd Robertson his client has become an ISIS target after co-operating with western intelligence groups.

“(She) has co-operated and provided information to both the RCMP and foreign intelligence/law enforcement agencies relative to a listed terrorist group: ISIS, or Islamic State,” Niv said.

“This is a dangerous international terrorist organization. There has been a bounty placed on (her) life by this terrorist organization, due to her status as an apostate and her co-operation with law enforcement.”

The lawyer noted there are individuals in Calgary who are alleged to be members of ISIS, Including Hussein Borhot, who pleaded guilty last month to joining the terrorist group as a fighter after considering becoming a suicide bomber.

Borhot, who is currently free on bail, is to be sentenced next week.

“Furthermore, (she) intends to testify as a state witness at trials in foreign jurisdictions, including the United States. (She) is also a victim of torture, human trafficking and sexual assault.”

Crown prosecutor Monique Dion said the woman, now 31, went to Syria in 2014 to join the terrorist group.

“She was radicalized following the death of her brother,” Dion said.

In support of an application for a 12-month peace bond due to fears the woman will partake in terrorist activities, the prosecutor said the woman spent time detained by Syrian forces before being returned to Canada last year.

The court order would allow authorities “to manage certain rehabilitation counselling and treatment,” Dion said.

“Just to allow that to continue with some conditions to make sure that’s happening.”

The order would “ensure we don’t have a situation where she’s in contact with individuals who would espouse terrorist views,” Dion said.

Based on an affidavit sworn by RCMP Const. Melissa Schellenberg, Robertson agreed to place the woman under a peace bond finding there was evidence she posed a potential threat.

Schellenberg’s document indicated the woman was in Syria from at least Aug. 18, 2014, to her return to Canada last November.

During that time she promoted and advocated for ISIS using social media, Schellenberg said.

“There are reasonable grounds to conclude that while in that jurisdiction she personally sought out individuals loyal to the Islamic State,” Robertson said.

While she spent about two years in a Syrian prison camp, where she sought out de-radicalization resources, Schellenberg said she believed the woman was still strongly influenced by ISIS.

Among the conditions of her peace bond is that she receives any counselling or treatment recommended by probation and she is prohibited from associating with any person or group known to support a terrorist entity.

Original Article: https://calgaryherald.com/news/crime/once-a-member-of-isis-calgary-woman-is-now-a-target-court-told