Bronx man & wife arrested trying to join ISIS through
NJ cargo ship, conspired attack on West Point
BY ALEX MITCHELL
A Bronx man and his wife, from
Alabama, are being held without bail
for allegedly trying to join ISIS at the
very end of March and plotting out an
attack on the U.S. Military Academy
at West Point, federal prosecutors reported.
James Bradley, 20, of the Bronx
and Arwa Muthana, 29, of Hoover, AL
were both arrested while attempting
to stowaway on a Middle East-bound
cargo ship in Port Newark, NJ, which
was actually a sting operation by police
on March 31, according to authorities.
“James Bradley allegedly pledged
devout allegiance to ISIS, expressing
his desire to ‘fi ght among the ranks
for the Islamic State,” said U.S. Attorney
Audrey Strauss for the Southern
District of New York.
“Suspecting he may be unable to
travel, Bradley instead allegedly discussed
conducting terrorist attacks
along with his wife, Arwa Muthana,
also an ISIS supporter, against the US
Military Academy at West Point or another
area university where Bradley
knew military recruits to be training,”
Court documents state that since
2019 Bradley had been expressing violent,
extremist views and his own desire
to support ISIS by traveling overseas
to join the group or committing a
terrorist attack in the United States.
In May of 2020, Bradley inadvertently
told an undercover offi cer that
he believed that ISIS may be good for
Muslims because ISIS was establishing
Fearing he might have been placed
on a terrorism watch list, it was around
that time when Bradley conspired a
possible attack on West Point.
The following month Bradley spoke
to that same undercover operative,
saying that his plan to attack a military
base was “something he really
wanted to do and that it would be his
contribution to the cause of jihad,” federal
If not West Point, Bradley considered
attacking Reserve Offi cer Training
Corps at another university in
New York by using his own truck to
take the cadets “out.”
Bradley and Muthana wed in January
of this year, around the same time
they had been strategizing their travel
methods to the Middle East, where
they planned to facilitate alleged desires
of joining the Islamic State.
In early March of this year, Bradley
traveled to Alabama so he could bring
A cargo ship at Port of Newark in Newark, New Jersey U.S. November 27, 2017.
her back to New York and begin the
process of their overseas travel from
the New York area.
The undercover offi cer had then offered
the couple assistance in boarding
a cargo ship bound for either Asia
or Africa and put them in touch with
a second undercover unit who had
donned the role of a trip facilitator.
Bradley met with the second undercover
operative, expressed desire both
fi ght and pledge an oath of allegiance
for for ISIS, later paying the offi cer
$1,000 in cash to cover travel costs for
what they believed was a ship headed
On March 25, the undercover told
Bradley that the ship would be leaving
Port Newark the following Wednesday,
that same offi cer joined them en
route to the seaport where they heard
Muthana confess she was traveling to
They were arrested while walking
on a gangplank to board the ship,
Muthana waived her Miranda rights
and stated she “was willing to fi ght
and kill Americans if it was for Allah,”
according to court documents.
The FBI also seized what appears to
be a hand-drawn image of a jihadi fl ag
commonly used by ISIS and a handdrawn
map of the Pakistan region inside
a bedroom used by Bradley.
Both Bradley and Muthana are
charged with one count of attempting
to provide material support to a designated
foreign terrorist organization,
which carries a maximum sentence of
20 years in prison.
They are also being brought up one
count of conspiring to provide material
support to a designated foreign
terrorist organization, a crime that
also carries a maximum 20-year sentence.
FAMILY COURT OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
COUNTY OF THE BRONX
DOCKET #: NN-03520-1/20
CHILD NEGLECT CASE
In the Matter of a Proceeding Under
Child(ren) Under Eighteen Years of Age Alleged
To Have Been Neglected by
IN THE NAME OF THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
NOTICE: PLACEMENT OF YOUR CHILD IN FOSTER CARE MAY RESULT IN LOSS OF YOUR
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YOU ARE HEREBY SUMMONED to appear before this Court at
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