Pakistani-born US woman pleads guilty to bitcoin fraud to help IS

Updated 27 Nov 2018

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Pakistani-born woman admits her role in defrauding financial institutions in a bitcoin scheme. — File photo
Pakistani-born woman admits her role in defrauding financial institutions in a bitcoin scheme. — File photo

A Pakistani-born American woman has acknowledged her role in defrauding numerous financial institutions in a bitcoin scheme to help the militant Islamic State (IS) group.

Prosecutors say Zoobia Shahnaz, a naturalised US citizen living on Long Island, pleaded guilty in federal court in Central Islip on Monday to providing material support to a foreign terrorist organisation.

The 27-year-old was charged with laundering bitcoin and wiring money to the IS group. After quitting her job, she was stopped at Kennedy Airport last year attempting to fly to Pakistan.

Shahnaz's lawyer has said she was trying to help Syrian refugees.

She faces up to 20 years in prison.