UK Mom Jailed For Poisoning Son To Avoid Traveling To Syria With Jihadi Husband

Anders Hagstrom | Justice Reporter

A U.K. woman was sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison Friday for repeatedly poisoning her son with the goal of making it impossible for her jihadi husband to force them to travel to Islamic State-controlled areas of Syria.

The unnamed woman was convicted on charges of administering a noxious substance to endanger life, but her lawyer, Kate O’Raghallaigh argued she had only resorted to the poison as a method of staying in the country, the Guardian reported Friday. The woman repeatedly gave her son medication to make him ill over period of six weeks in 2015.

Her thinking was that so long as her son was in the hospital, her husband couldn’t take them to join ISIS, according to O’Raghallaigh.

“That is how the idea came to life,” O’Raghallaigh told the court. “She began to realize that if she made him ill, the hospital would have to take him in. As long as he was admitted, so she thought, he was safe, perverse as that thought process was.”

The woman was convicted of administering two drugs to the boy. The first is known to be an anti-psychotic, but the second is unknown, although doctors guess it was most likely feces or sink cleaner.

The boy has since fully recovered, however, he was diagnosed with severe neurological symptoms during his several trips to the hospital and once fell into a coma. Doctors eventually caught on that the boy’s state would worsen only after his mother visited. The hospital then made the decision to institute 24 nursing care for the boy, preventing his mother from getting the opportunity to poison him.

In addition to the life endangerment charge, the woman pleaded guilty to three counts of administering an unknown noxious substance and four lesser counts of administering an anti-psychotic drug.

“What you were inflicting on that young child threatened the very life you claim you were seeking to protect, and that must have become apparent to you,” Judge Peter Loddler said in court. “You knew that your son would have to undergo painful invasive procedures and on 29 October, what you gave your son was a potentially lethal dose.”

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