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DOJ slaps 295 cases vs alleged IS recruiter

/ 11:36 AM December 13, 2017

In this file photo, Justice Secretary Vitaliano Aguirre II shows the photo of arrested suspect Karen Aizha Hamidon, who was allegedly spreading extremist propaganda and recruiting foreign fighters on the internet during a news conference. (INQUIRER.net FILE PHOTO / Jhoanna Ballaran)

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has indicted the woman accused of using social media to spread extremism and recruit Islamic State (IS) fighters.

In a resolution released on Wednesday, 295 counts of inciting to rebellion under Article 138 of the Revised Penal Code in relation to Section 6 of the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012 have been filed before the Taguig Regional Trial court against Karen Aizha Hamidon.

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The DOJ prosecutors recommended a P20,000-bail for each count for her temporary liberty.

Hamidon is the ex-wife of Singaporean terrorist Muhammad Shamin Mohammed Sidek as well as the widow of slain leader of the terror group Ansar Khalifa Philippines (AKP), Mohammad Jaafar Maguid alias Tokboy, who was killed in a shootout with police in Saranggani last January.

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She was arrested last October for using social media to teach extremism and recruit IS fighters to join the conflict in southern Philippines.

Complainant, the National Bureau of Investigation’s Counter-Terrorism Division said that Hamidon “was prolific in her recruitment and promotion activities for IS.”

This is an example of her social media post cited in the resolution:

“Peace, mercy and blessings of God. A message addressed to all united brothers in various parts of the world, especially brothers in East Asia; the Islamic State invites you to join in the Philippines. We note that the door to immigration is open to the cities of Marawi and Mindanao. come and join the heroes and supporters of Islamic law through jihad for the sake of Allah,”

Hamidon denied the allegations saying she has no means to take arms against the government. She said she worked as a flight attendant and a call center agent in several BPOs.

She said authorities took interest in her after marrying Tokboy.

She claimed she was only forced to commit the said acts. She said she has been receiving death threats even after her divorce with Tokboy.

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But the DOJ said the allegations of Hamidon “deserve scant consideraton, since the contents of [the messages] and the multiple times these were posted defy her theory of instigation.”

Senior Assistant State Prosecutor Peter L. Ong said the number of times she has posted her messages defies her accusation that she was only forced to write such messages.

“As to her arguments that she was not committing any crime at the time she was arrested and at the time her mobile phone was seized, and all the aforequoted social media posts do not bear her name, these arguments are evidentiary in character which are best ventilated in a full-blown trial,” the DOJ resolution stated.

“The presumption prevails that complainants regularly performed their official duties and ordinary course of business has been followed,” it added./kga

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TAGS: Ansar Khalifa Philippines, DoJ, Islamic State, Karen Aizha Hamidon, Social Media, Terrorism
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