07 Jul 2022

Dundalk woman Lisa Smith found not guilty of funding a terrorist organisation

Dundalk woman Lisa Smith  found not guilty of funding a terrorist organisation

Lisa Smith has been found not guilty of funding a terrorist organisation but the Special Criminal Court is still delivering its judgment in relation to the charge against her of membership of Isis.

Ms Smith (39) from Dundalk, Co Louth had pleaded not guilty to membership of an unlawful terrorist group, Islamic State, between October 28th, 2015 and December 1st, 2019. She also pleaded not guilty to financing terrorism by sending €800 in assistance, via a Western Union money transfer, to a named man on May 6th, 2015.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt said it is reasonably possible that Ms Smith intended the money to be used for humanitarian reasons rather than for the benefit of a terrorist organisation.

In numerous interviews with gardai after she returned to Ireland in December 2019 she said repeatedly that she travelled to Syria because she believed she had a religious obligation to live inside the Islamic State that was announced by terrorist leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in 2014.

She denied that she went to join a terrorist organisation. The prosecution alleged that by travelling to Syria in answer to a call by al-Baghdadi for all Muslims to come to Syria, Ms Smith joined a terrorist organisation. They said that people like Ms Smith were the "life blood" of Isis and critical to its mission to spread its version of Islam by violence and murder.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt is still delivering the verdict in relation to the membership charge at the three-judge, non-jury court. 

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