Woman facing terrorism charge says her phone was hacked

A woman has denied in court sharing ISIS propaganda on social media, claming her phone had been hacked.

Monday, 6th March 2017, 5:23 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 11:11 am

Mary Kaya, 57, from Batley, allegedly used the guise of ‘Justice’ as her Twitter name as she re-tweeted pictures of militants clutching guns, IS flags and showing the world’s most villainous men - including terrorist supporter Anjem Choudary.

Despite only having 32 followers on her Twitter account - @gardenofgold - she shared audio, video and images relating to the so-called Islamic State.

Leeds Crown Court heard the alleged terrorism offence involves audio footage from self-proclaimed IS warlord Abū Bakr al-Baghdadi telling Muslims to rise up and make Islam a mega state.

The audio clip entitled ‘disbelievers despise such’ was re-tweeted by Kaya - but she claimed her account had later been hacked despite initially telling cops it was hers.

She denies one count of disseminating terrorist publications following an investigation by the North East Counter Terrorism Unit in October 2015.

Prosecutor Simon Davis told the court today: “The defendant said in her first interview ‘I am the only one who uses my account, if there is anything on there then I am guilty’.

“When asked what she used the devices for she said was ‘to see what is going on in the world’.

“In her next interview the defendant provided a ‘no comment’ interview.

“She said that she had been hacked - but despite all this time had passed why did she not say someone else was writing those things.”

The court heard that police officers visited Kaya’s address in May 2014 on un-related matters and the house was searched and a computer was seized.

During the following months, forensics kept a tab on Kaya’s Twitter activity and scoured all of her 237 favourited posts and investigated the users she followed.

Kaya allegedly picked fights with English Defence League (EDL) supporters.

Over the following months proceeding the initial arrest, Kaya’s profile had changed from an ordinary picture of a horse paying tribute to Allah to more extreme material hailing the works of terrorists.

Maya was then arrested interviewed for two hours in October 2015 and said that anything that was on her own Twitter feed was hers.

However, in January 2016 the defendant gave a no comment interview and said she had been hacked during November 2014 when the terrorist material was circulated.

Mr Davis told the jury that Kaya’s defence was now that someone else had been using her Twitter account.

Kaya, who had lived in Dewsbury, denies engaging in conduct - namely providing a service to others that enabled to obtain, read, listen to or look at a terrorist publication.

The trial was adjourned until Tuesday.