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Federal Criminal Court Swiss indict suspected ‘jihadi traveller’

The suspect was arrested upon arrival at Zurich airport.


The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) has indicted a 30-year-old woman from the Zurich area suspected of trying to reach Syria to join the radical Islamic State group accompanied by her young child.

The prosecutor's office announced on Thursday that it had filed an indictment with the Federal Criminal Court against the woman, who is accused of offences under Switzerland’s federal law against terrorist organisationsexternal link

The OAG reports that the woman travelled illegally from Egypt to Greece in December 2015. It claims she wanted to go to Syria via Turkey to join the Islamic State (IS) terrorist organisation. 

The woman, who was travelling with her four-year-old child, was stopped by the Greek authorities and then arrested at the Zurich airport on her return to Switzerland in January 2016. The OAG will propose a sentence at a hearing before the Federal Criminal Court in Bellinzona, canton Ticino. The accused is presumed innocent until found guilty. 

The Swiss attorney general maintains a strict policy of prosecuting all jihadi travellers based on a Federal Supreme Court judgement issued in February 2017. In that decision, the court upheld the conviction of a jihadi traveller who planned to join IS in April 2015, but was arrested while boarding a plane in Zurich. 

Earlier this year, Switzerland’s intelligence service identified 90 people living in Switzerland as being “at risk” of jihadism. Another 500 are considered “virtual” jihadists for their internet activity.

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