By Cam Lucadou-Wells
A 23-year-old Hallam woman accused of terrorism offences has been linked to Islamic State-themed web searches and bookmarked articles, a committal hearing has heard.
Hadashah Sa’adat Khan faces charges including attempting to intentionally associate with and recruit for Islamic State in 2015 and 2016.
She is also charged with aiding a person to perform an intended hostile activity for Islamic State in a foreign country in 2016.
The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) initially tipped off Victoria Police with information including a list of online accounts linked to Sa’adat Khan, the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court heard on 7 April.
Victoria Police passed on the information to Australian Federal Police, which raided Sa’adat Khan’s home on 23 January 2018.
In reports tendered to the court, AFP digital analysts examined an iPhone X, a laptop, iPod Touch and iPhone 6s allegedly linked to Sa’adat Khan.
In an iPhone backup on the laptop, two video messages via “Al Furqan media” from Islamic State of Iraq were allegedly bookmarked on a Chrome web browser in 2017.
An analyst allegedly also listed bookmarked articles from an ‘ansarukhilafah’ blog.
One was titled ‘ASSISTING THE ISLAMIC STATE AGAINST THE ALLIED FORCES OF THE KUFFAAR, MURTADEEN AND MUNAFIQEEN, IS ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT PRINCIPLES OF EMAAN’.
Another bookmark partly titled “jihadi stories” was also allegedly found on the iPhone backup.
The analyst told the court that it was possible that the laptop bookmark may not have been read in detail by the user.
It was also possible that a laptop could “inadvertently” create a bookmark.
“It doesn’t happen often but that’s a possibility.”
The analyst’s report also listed an empty video record ‘the-islamic-state-22our-state-is-victorious22’ linked to a DropBox cloud storage account that was not accessible to the analyst.
Also found was a YouTube video record titled ‘Nasheed – The Bride of War’.
On an iPod Touch, an AFP analyst also reported an iMessage exchange in 2017.
“Just incase I don’t come back know that my heart desires no other than you,” an unidentified person writes.
“Also, don’t let it stop you from making hijrah. Find someone else here and marry them. That’s if I don’t come back but In sha allah I do.”
The iPod user replies: “Wth no I’ll make hijrah but I’m not gonna get married please. In shaa Allah you will come back.”
Web searches in 2016 for “muslim brotherhood tumblr” and “brotherhood in Islamic state tumblr” were also allegedly found on the iPod.
Other passages were found in the Notes of the iPod, urging someone to “book that ticket”.
A 2015 note stated: “Look all im going to say is that there are sisters here that want to get married but honestly from them all you’re the best option, i’d really like to marry you before them, just tell that shaytaan that whispers to shut his mouth and just book that ticket.”
“honestly i know it seems crazy but once that ticket is booked your mind just accepts it and it becomes normal seriously…
“when i booked that ticket i was far from being ready and so was my family, but i forced myself to do it because if i didn’t do then, than i would still be there just dreaming about it.”
According to the AFP reports, images and instant messages on the encrypted Telegram phone app were examined.
The AFP also listed Tumblr and Facebook Messenger chats with undisclosed participants.
Redacted contact records from Kik, Viber, Facebook Messenger, Snapchat, Twitter and the phone address book were also submitted.
Defence barrister Rishi Nathwani told the court that Sa’adat Khan, who had been incarcerated since 2020, faced lengthy delays awaiting a possible County Court trial.
Sa’adat Khan watched on a video-link from Dame Phyllis Frost prison.
The committal hearing continues on 23 June.