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Woman accused of aiding ISIS ‘suffering greatly’ without her daughters, attorney says

A Schiller Park woman accused of financially aiding ISIS terrorists “is suffering greatly” because she has been separated from her four daughters, her attorney claims.

Medy Salkicevic wants a federal judge in St. Louis to find that she is neither a flight risk nor a danger to her community so she may return to her family. And in papers filed by her Chicago lawyer over the weekend, Salkicevic offered to meet five conditions while she faces charges that she sent $1,500 in PayPal payments used to buy surplus military gear, including combat boots and uniforms.

Making the request, Salkicevic’s lawyer highlighted the written comments of the oldest daughter of her client, a naturalized U.S. citizen who emigrated from Bosnia. The judge is still considering the request, records show.

“My mother is the backbone to this family. Without her, it’s easy to fall apart,” Salkicevic’s daughter wrote. “My mom is the reason this family keeps going and keeps looking forward. She is the inspiration behind everything we’ve grown up to be. Strong, independent, confident, etc.”

Salkicevic said two of her close friends would post property for a secured bond. She agreed to electronic monitoring that would allow her to be home with her daughters and receive appropriate health care and monitoring. She also said her husband is willing to act as a third-party custodian.

She said she wouldn’t seek a new passport for herself or her family members and that she would travel only to and from court unless she secured permission to do otherwise from the court. She also said she would refrain from charitable work, which is how she characterized the fundraising that led to her charges.

A federal judge in Chicago last month refused to free Salkicevic after her arrest so that she could travel to Missouri on her own. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Cole said at the time he had to be extra cautious when considering the release of defendants charged in terrorism cases.

But Andrea Gambino, Salkicevic’s defense attorney, argued at the time that her client is anchored to the community through her four daughters and husband. Gambino said police confiscated Salkicevic’s passport. But Cole countered that Salkicevic could simply drive away, saying “this is an enormous, enormous country.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Angel Krull argued that Salkicevic, who works for Alliance Airlines, a company that handles airline cargo, had $7,000 in her checking account and was an avid traveler who in recent years had been to Germany, Serbia and Turkey. She said Salkicevic had the knowledge and resources to flee.

Contributing: Mitch Dudek