Jail for Tyrone woman who planned to raise children under Islamic State in Syria

Muslim convert Lorna Moore
Muslim convert Lorna Moore

A Northern Ireland-born Muslim mother who wanted to bring up her children under the Islamic State in Syria has been jailed for two-and-a-half years.

Muslim convert Lorna Moore, 34, was planning to take her three young children to the war zone – including an 11-month-old baby.

Around the same time, a number of pregnant women from the same community were poised to give birth in the Caliphate.

Moore, from Walsall, West Midlands, but who is originally from Omagh in Tyrone, failed to tell authorities her husband Sajid Aslam, 34, was about to leave for Syria.

Ayman Shaukat, 28, was also convicted of preparing terrorist acts by helping Aslam and Muslim convert Alex Nash, 22, on their way.

Kerry Thomason, 24, was pregnant when she was stopped from flying out with her two children to join her husband in Syria.

Sentencing at the Old Bailey, Judge Charles Wide described Moore as a “very strong character” and said she “knew perfectly well of your husband’s dedication to terrorism”.

“One of the troubling things about you is your facility for telling lies,” he added.

He said Moore had told “lie after lie” to the jury during her trial and that some of her evidence was “nonsense”.

She was sentenced to two years and six months’ imprisonment.

Shaukat was jailed for a total of 10 years with a five-year extended licence while Nash was jailed for five years with a one-year additional licence.

Judge Wide said Shaukat was “committed” and Nash “dedicated” to terrorism.

He described Thomason as “naive” and said her husband made “ugly threats” against her in trying to persuade her to join him.

She was sentenced to two years imprisonment suspended for two years with a supervision order and six-month tagged curfew between 6pm and 6am.

At the time of Aslam’s departure in August 2014, Moore had taken the rest of the family on a Butlin’s holiday in Skegness.

As Aslam crossed into Syria, he sent a triumphant coded message back to Shaukat in the form of a video link to a song called I Made It by Cash Money Heroes.

Within months, Moore had booked flights to Palma, Majorca, but her final destination was given away in a text from Nash’s pregnant wife in Turkey saying “see you there”.

Moore insisted she would “never” put her children’s lives in danger, adding: “They mean the world to me.”

She claimed her relationship with Aslam ended after he became abusive and they only lived together for the sake of the children who are now aged three, nine and 10.

She told jurors that when she turned to a Muslim cleric for a divorce, he told her that a “white Muslim is not a special Muslim” and she must take her husband back.