US girl used bitcoin to transport money to Islamic State, police say


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Bitcoin will also be bought on-line or by the use of particular ATMs

A New York girl has been accused of laundering bitcoin and different cryptocurrencies and wiring the cash to assist the so-called Islamic State.

Zoobia Shahnaz, 27, used to be charged with financial institution fraud, conspiracy to devote cash laundering and cash laundering and is being held with out bail.

Ms Shahnaz used to be born in Pakistan and labored as a lab technician in the USA.

Prosecutors say she took out fraudulent loans of $85,000 (£63,000) with the intention to purchase the bitcoin on-line.

Bitcoin is a web based foreign money. Regardless of no longer being prison soft – it cannot be used to pay for normal items and services and products – the worth of bitcoin has rocketed this yr.

It’s been exploited through criminals to launder cash. British government are pushing to extend legislation of the foreign money.

In keeping with court docket data, Ms Shahnaz, who lives in Brentwood on Lengthy Island, used to be a lab technician at a New york medical institution till June.

Prosecutors mentioned that Ms Shahnaz received a Pakistani passport in July and booked a flight to Pakistan with a layover in Istanbul, desiring to go back and forth to Syria.

She used to be arrested at John F Kennedy airport wearing $nine,500 in money, slightly below the prohibit of $10,000 that an individual can legally take in another country with out stating the budget.

Searches of her digital gadgets confirmed a large number of searches for Islamic State-related subject matter.

Ms Shahnaz faces as much as 20 years in jail on each and every of the cash laundering fees and as much as 30 years for the financial institution fraud rate.

Her attorney, Steve Zissou, mentioned she used to be sending cash in a foreign country to assist Syrian refugees.

“What she noticed made her dedicated to lessening the struggling of a large number of the Syrian refugees and the whole thing she does is for that goal,” Mr Zissou mentioned out of doors the courthouse.

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