Parents of two grown sons who left America and traveled to Syria where they joined ISIS are being sent to prison for lying to the FBI about the terror activities of their children, reported the Dallas News.
The Texas couple, Sumaiya Ali, 49, and her husband Mohommad Hasnain Ali, 57, were in regular communication with their sons Arman and Omar, when the two traveled first to Egypt and then to Syria in the fall of 2014 to fight with ISIS.
Sumaiya was given a 30-month sentence in federal prison, while Mohammad was given a sentence of 12 months and one day. They were also fined $5,000 each.
Before their sentencing, each parent apologized for their actions and thanked the court for the plea bargain they were offered.
The court heard how sons kept their mother up to date about their activities and sent her a travel itinerary, all of which she shared with her husband.
Moreover, in 2014, when Omar communicated to his mother he wanted to join ISIS, she wrote back to him, “Do what u need to do.” His response was, “Then going to Syria, it is.”
In 2015, Arman emailed his father from Syria saying, “Things are heating up here, and I can’t guarantee me or Omar will be there in 2 months… I’ve been to the hospital every day with brothers from my group. Close friends have died, too many injured. Me and Omar are perfectly fine right now, but soon we may not be.”
However, when the FBI interviewed the couple just a few months later, both told the FBI that their sons were in Egypt. According to court documents Sumaiya said her sons “are very reserved” and would never be involved with ISIS while Mohammad told the FBI that “his sons were peaceful [and] like to study.” He also said he had never known his sons to be involved with terrorists organizations.
At present, the whereabouts of Omar, 26, and Arman, 27, are unknown. In March 2017, a criminal complaint was filed against the brothers for providing material support to a designated foreign terrorist organization.