PHILADELPHIA -- A Maryland teenager from Pakistan is being held in U.S. custody 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, they said Friday. LaRose, 48, 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 prestigious 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.
According to the person, 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. However, the parents had authorized the interviews.
The teen met LaRose online when he was 15, according to LaRose's indictment and the person close to the investigation.
A law enforcement official confirmed details of his arrest to The Associated Press. Both people spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak publicly about the sealed juvenile case. The AP is not publicizing the teen's name because of his age.
The teen's lawyer, Jeffrey M. Lindy, said it would be "very inappropriate" for him to comment on the case, which he called "highly sensitive."
The Philadelphia Inquirer first reported on the arrest in Friday editions.
The Department of Justice declined to comment on reports of his arrest.