A Maryland teen from Pakistan is being held on terrorism charges, accused of soliciting funds and recruits to help a Pennsylvania woman known as Jihad Jane, two people close to the investigation confirm.
Juvenile charges filed last month accuse the 17-year-old of helping Colleen LaRose support overseas terrorists she had met online, the two sources said Friday.
LaRose, 48, who dubbed herself Jihad Jane in a YouTube video, has pleaded guilty to charges she plotted to kill a Swedish artist who had offended Muslims.
The Ellicott City, Md., teen had accepted a full scholarship to Johns Hopkins University, according to a person close to his family. Instead, he remains in custody at a youth facility in Berks County, Pa. He could have his case moved to adult court when he turns 18 next month.
The FBI searched the family's home near Baltimore and interviewed the teen several times at FBI headquarters without a lawyer or family member present, according to the person who spoke on condition of anonymity. However, the parents had authorized the interviews.
The teen met LaRose online when he was 15, according to LaRose's indictment.
A law enforcement official speaking on condition of anonymity confirmed details of his arrest to the Associated Press. The AP is not publicizing the teen's name because of his age.
The teen, who came to the U.S. four years ago and has lived with his family in suburban Baltimore, is accused of meeting LaRose in an online chat room in 2009.
Her indictment alleges that he solicited money for her online and circulated a questionnaire to at least one woman asking about "her beliefs and intentions with regard to jihad" and if she had a European passport. In soliciting funds, he pledged to forward money to LaRose, for her to pass on to the jihadists, authorities say.