Why Officials Are Investigating Colorado's Jamie Paulin-Ramirez in Ireland

March 2010

U.S. officials are investigating 31-year-old Jamie Paulin-Ramirez, currently in Ireland, for a role she may have played in an alleged plot to kill a Swedish cartoonist. But the Colorado mother, recent convert to Islam, and possible cohort of "Jihad Jane" was arrested and released without charge by authorities in the European country, according to The Wall Street Journal, which points out that Irish law allows for the former nursing student from Leadville to possibly be re-arrested following a review. It's unclear how authorities will proceed, but newspapers are reporting that Paulin-Ramirez was implicated in a scheme to assassinate Lars Vilks, a cartoonist who depicted the prophet Muhammad as a dog in a sketch (via Britain's Guardian). Paulin-Ramirez's mother, Christine Mott, describes her daughter as lonely, someone who "got sucked in" to Islamist extremism after converting: "What caused her to turn her back on her country, on her family and become this person? I don't know how or why." The family also claims Paulin-Ramirez corresponded with Colleen R. LaRose, known as "Jihad Jane," as well as admitted terrorist conspirator and former Denver International Airport shuttle-bus driver Najibullah Zazi, reports The Denver Post. "She couldn't do anything that would make people take notice," says her stepfather, 51-year-old George Mott, himself a Muslim for more than 40 years. "Then she became a Muslim. Here was this blond, blue-eyed woman wearing a burqa. She knew everybody was going to want to know why."