COLUMBUS, Miss.–Trying to get to Syria to join the Islamic State is the charge against Muhammed Dakhlalla, 22, and Jaelyn Young, 19, who were arrested this weekend at the Golden Triangle Airport in Columbus.
The plan, apparently, was to leave from a smaller, more rural airport, with the assumption that security officers and TSA there would be more lax.
The FBI had been following the couple’s movements for some time, however, and already knew what their plan was. That plan, according to a complaint filed in court Monday, was to get to Turkey first, and then to Syria to join up with ISIS, a terrorist organization that has targeted Americans and others and has released videos of mass executions by shooting, beheading and crucifixion, among other methods.
“We will leave from the US on Saturday and arrive in Turkey on Sunday,” read a statement from Young recorded by the FBI, who befriended Young and Dakhlalla on social media. “We live in a small town with a very small airport that doesn’t have much, if any, security.”
The couple is married and both are former Mississippi State students. Dakhlalla graduated with a degree in psychology and Young was working on her degree in chemistry.
The FBI detailed their conversations with the couple as agents pretended to be with ISIS. Their plan was to pose as a newlywed couple on their honeymoon and travel first to Europe, then on to Turkey and finally to Syria.
Young said in one part of the conversation that she was angry that information was getting around that girls as young as one to nine were being sold into the sex trade to fund ISIS.
“These ppl believe it, too. I cannot wait to be in Dawlah. These likes are so toxic, I am getting very angry at them for believing such stupidity,” said Young in a communication with an undercover agent.
The FBI said that both Young and Dakhlalla admitted what they were doing when they were caught. A federal court hearing was expected to continue Tuesday.