MINNEAPOLIS – A Minnesota woman has been charged with stealing a friend’s passport and using it to travel to an area of the Middle East controlled by terrorists.
A United States Attorney announced a complaint charging Yusra Ismail, age 20, with stealing and misusing a passport. According to the complaint and documents filed in court, on August 18, 2014, Ismail visited a friend and asked to see her passport. Before leaving her home on that day, Ismail surreptitiously took the passport and subsequently left her friend’s home.
According to the complaint and documents filed in court, three days later, Ismail asked a different friend to drive her to Minneapolis/Saint Paul airport, from which she departed on a flight bound for Amsterdam, the Netherlands. She later traveled from Amsterdam to Oslo, Norway.
According to the complaint and documents filed in court, Ismail contacted members of her family on August 24, 2014, and told one or more of them that she was in “Sham,” which is a term commonly used to describe the area within Syria and Iraq where the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is attempting to establish a caliphate and is waging a terrorist war against those nations and allies of the United States.
There is no record that Ismail, who is not a United States citizen, has lawfully returned to the United States.
This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Joint Terrorism Task Force, under the supervision of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
It has been reported that hundreds of people or more from around the world are attempting to enter this are and join the ISIS terrorists; some of these people are from Minnesota and elsewhere in the U.S.