US & Canada

Muslim woman 'made up NY subway hate attack' by Trump fans

Facebook picture shows Yasmin Seweid smiling to camera Image copyright Facebook
Image caption Yasmin Seweid faces up to a year in jail for each charge

A young Muslim woman who reported being harassed on the New York subway by supporters of US President-elect Donald Trump has been arrested for fabricating the story, officials say.

Yasmin Seweid, 18, said three men had called her a "terrorist".

She has been charged with filing a false report and obstructing governmental administration.

She reportedly later admitted to police she had been out drinking and had made up the story as an excuse.

The student originally told police the men had told her to "get out of this country" and to "get the f****** hijab off your head!", NBC reports.

She said they had tried to tear off her headscarf and that no bystanders had intervened during the alleged incident on 1 December. She also said that one of the men had grabbed her bag, breaking the strap.

"It breaks my heart that so many individuals chose to be bystanders while watching me get harassed verbally and physically by these disgusting pigs," she said on Facebook one day later, according to NBC.

But officials reportedly got suspicious when they could not find witnesses or any significant video.

Then, last Friday, the woman was reported missing, in a case that was widely reported on US media. She was found one day later.

She was arrested on Wednesday and admitted fabricating the story to avoid getting into trouble with her parents.

Ms Seweid was arraigned at Manhattan Criminal Court, where she appeared without a veil and with her hair shaved. Unnamed sources told the NY Daily News her parents had forced her to cut her hair over the incident.

Released on Thursday, she faces up to a year in jail for each charge.

In the days after the election of Mr Trump in November, hundreds of alleged cases of intimidation and abuse were reported in the US. Many of the cases were linked to Trump supporters, a monitoring group said.

Media captionThe BBC spoke to a Muslim-American couple targeted by an abusive caller

Related Topics

More on this story