Parents defend terror case Briton - Americas - World - The Independent

Parents defend terror case Briton

The parents of a pregnant British mother accused of being part of a US terrorism plot have protested her innocence, it emerged today.

Nadia Rockwood, 36, admitted lying to FBI agents about the existence of a hit list of possible targets when she appeared in court in Anchorage, Alaska, alongside her American husband Paul, 35.



The two were also charged with making false statements about terrorism during interviews in May.



But Mrs Rockwood's parents, Samuel and Piri Hawes, have insisted their daughter is not a terrorist.



Mr Hawes, a 67-year-old engineer, said: "I'm against any form of terrorism, especially in the name of religion."



He told the Daily Mail: "I know my daughter. We are very close. She is not in any way a terrorist. Paul has strong views but he loves America."



Mr Hawes said he had spent years arguing with his son-in-law about religion and had received threatening emails from him after a row about Islam.



The couple said Mr Rockwood, also known as Bilal, converted to Islam after 9/11 to try to control a serious drink problem.



US prosecutors said he began studying the teachings of American-born cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, who has professed a hatred for the US and supported acts of terrorism, about a decade ago when the couple lived in Virginia.



"He is a bit of a prat but I can't believe he would have got himself involved in anything like this," Mr Hawes said.



Meanwhile Mrs Hawes, a 66-year-old psychotherapist, said her daughter, who is five months pregnant and has a four-year-old son, is struggling to cope while in custody.



She told the paper: "Doctors have put her on extra medication to try to make sure the baby stays healthy. And she has her boy, Zaid - what will happen with him?"



When the couple were arrested, Mrs Rockwood was reportedly planning to return to live near her mother in England.



Before moving to the US, she was employed as a professional dancer. She left the UK to work as a bridal model in Japan where she met her husband, who was a member of the US Navy.



According to the paper, Mrs Rockwood was brought up as a strict Roman Catholic in Harrow, north London, and attended the Italia Conti performing arts school, where she studied ballet and jazz.



Federal authorities have claimed her husband selected possible targets for future execution by visiting websites.



After he moved to Alaska, they said he began researching explosive components, construction of remote triggering devices, such as mobile phones, and construction of bombs to be delivered by common mail carriers.



They claimed he began discussing using mail bombs and possibly killing targets by gunshot to the head last year.



He was alleged to have given the list of around 15 targets to his wife in April before she took it to Anchorage, where it was picked up by the FBI. Its contents were not made public.



In court Mrs Rockwood admitted she was aware her husband wanted to seek revenge and knew the purpose of the list. But when questioned, she denied delivering the list and claimed it was a book or letter.



Interviewed by the the FBI, her husband denied having had a list, insisted he did not create it and rejected its alleged purpose.



Under a plea deal, Mr Rockwood, who worked as a meteorological technician for the US national weather service, would serve eight years in prison and his wife would get five years' probation in the UK.



US District Judge Ralph Beistline did not immediately approve the deal, but postponed sentencing.



Mr Rockwood is being held in custody while his wife is to be released to take care of their son until her sentencing.



US Attorney for Alaska Karen Loeffler said the case was the first of its kind in King Salmon, a small community of a few hundred people on the Alaska Peninsula.

Suggested Topics
News
Paper trail: the wedding photograph found in the rubble after 9/11 – it took Elizabeth Keefe 13 years to find the people in it
newsWho are the people in this photo? It took Elizabeth Stringer Keefe 13 years to find out
Arts and Entertainment
Evil eye: Douglas Adams in 'mad genius' pose
booksNew biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Sport
FootballFull debuts don't come much more stylish than those on show here
News
i100
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
Kim Kardashian drawn backlash over her sexy swimsuit selfie, called 'disgusting' and 'nasty'
fashionCritics say magazine only pays attention to fashion trends among rich, white women
Arts and Entertainment
TVShows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Arts and Entertainment
Hit the roof: hot-tub cinema east London
architectureFrom pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
Travel
travel
News
The ecological reconstruction of Ikrandraco avatar is shown in this illustration courtesy of Chuang Zhao. Scientists on September 11, 2014 announced the discovery of fossils in China of a type of flying reptile called a pterosaur that lived 120 millions years ago and so closely resembled those creatures from the 2009 film, Avatar that they named it after them.
SCIENCE
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Matisse: The Cut-Outs exhibition attracted 562,000 visitors to the Tate Modern from April to September
art
Life and Style
Models walk the runway at the Tom Ford show during London Fashion Week Spring Summer 2015
fashionLondon Fashion Week 2014
News
Kenny G
news
News
peopleThe black actress has claimed police mistook her for a prostitute when she kissed her white husband
Life and Style
techIndian model comes with cricket scores baked in
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Energy Markets Analyst

£400000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: Job Title: Energy Markets An...

Junior Web Analyst – West Sussex – Up to £35k DOE

£30000 - £35000 Per Annum Plus excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions...

Nursery Manager

£22000 - £23000 per annum: Randstad Education Bristol: We are currently recrui...

Web Analyst – Permanent – Up to £40k - London

£35000 - £40000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently r...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week