© Rex FeaturesAmal el-Wahabi and Nawal Msaad, old schoolfriends who were together accused of being drawn into the Syrian conflict.
Amal el-Wahabi and Nawal Msaad were the first British women to be tried for terror offences linked to Syria, but the jury heard a tale not of extremists but of manipulation from the jihadi frontline

They made unlikely jihadis; Amal el-Wahabi was described by her own barrister as a "foul-mouthed, phone-addicted, weed-smoking kaffir", Nawal Msaad a glamorous university student who had to be warned by the judge for associating with a male defendant in another court.

Wahabi was held in the sway of her husband who had swapped drug-dealing and criminality in the UK for jihad in Syria, while her old schoolfriend Msaad was accused of being an unquestioning mule who was drawn by the promise of €1,000 (£800) to carry money to Turkey.

Msaad was cleared on Wednesday following a four-week trial at the Old Bailey in London. Wahabi, becomes the first British woman to be convicted of terror offences since the Syrian conflict began.

During the trial, jurors heard how the pair, both aged 27, were not extremists and exhibited no support for the jihadist cause; rather they were ignorant dupes who became caught in the ripples of the Syrian conflict washing over communities in the UK.

Comment: What a sly descriptor that just happens to completely white-wash the fact that the mayhem in Syria was hatched by British intelligence:

UK planned war on Syria before unrest began: French ex-foreign minister Roland Dumas

Their appearance in court reveals just how wide the net is being cast by anti-terrorist officers to deter those who are lured to fight in Syria and those who might choose to support them back home. Sources confirm that these two women were not extremists; and were not a threat in any way to this country.

While they were the first women to be charged, it is known at least ten to 12 British women have travelled to Syria to support foreign fighters there; none to fight, but instead to take up a role as dutiful wife and housekeeper for their men within the rigid Islamist structure imposed by groups like Isis.

Comment: That almost makes it sound romantic.

It's not.

The girls are going there to 'service' the men. STDs are rampant among the thousands of European 'jihadis' waging full-scale bloody orgy in Syria and Iraq.

Other girls have tried and failed to travel to Syria - including two teenage girls from West Yorkshire and Surrey who were arrested after their families alerted police to their activities. They were never charged.

Wahabi was the eldest of four children. The daughter of a London bus driver, she worked hard at Holland Park secondary school, passing GCSEs and taking part in a Duke of Edinburgh scheme, before studying for NVQs in health and social care.

It was her relationship with Aine Davis, a former drug-dealer turned jihadi, which caught her up in the increased police activity around those who are joining jihadi groups as foreign fighters in Syria.

Davis and Wahabi had met when she was 19 at her local mosque near Portobello Road. Her parents never approved as they were suspicious of the origins of the plentiful cash Davis produced with no job or salary to his name. Davis had convictions for possessing a firearm and for possession of cannabis, but was suspected of drug-dealing on a wider scale.

He had followed a path well known to counter-terrorist officers: a young man in trouble in the UK, who dabbled in drug-dealing, and criminality, before being increasingly drawn into extremism. He attended the Brixton mosque - where Richard Reid the shoe bomber, and Zacarias Moussaoui, known as the 20th 9/11 hijacker, had gone before him, and by last July was on his way to Syria to join jihadi groups fighting there.

He left behind his wife Wahabi to look after their two young children. She lived on benefits until she took up a college course, and when arrested told police she had no more than £200 to her name. Davis had made no secret of his beliefs to his wife, leaving behind a ream of extremist literature, including speeches by radical clerics Abu Hamza and Anwar al-Awlaki on an iPod, and videos featuring Osama bin Laden and other celebrated jihadists in Somalia. But there was no evidence she showed any interest in it.

From his camp in Syria he sent Wahabi pictures of himself posing with guns, and a video of what he claimed was a 10 to 13-year-old boy holding a Kalashnikov in support of the jihadist cause in Syria.

In a series of messages on WhatsApp, Davis could be seen to be manipulating Wahabi into doing his bidding. Repeatedly he warned her that if she did not travel to Syria to join him he would take another wife, when she expressed her dismay - 'pls dnt get married 2 another wife. I dnt ask u 4 much n I love u" - he sent her a message from a sheikh to defend his case for polygamy. "It is well known that women are jealous by nature and reluctant to share their husbands with other women ... The first wife's consent is not a prerequisite for a man to take another wife," the message read.

In January, following a seven-minute telephone call with Davis, Wahabi messaged her friend Msaad to ask: "Hay bbz r u bussy dis week ... U wana do a job?"

With that and the lure of €1,000, Msaad - a student at London Metropolitan university, who had known Wahabi at Holland Park school - was drawn into the net.

Born and brought up in north London, Msaad's family were originally from Morocco. Like Wahabi she was not an individual whose activities had caused the police and security service any concern until she agreed to her friend's request to do a job for her. When Msaad asked "What's this about??", El Wahabi replied: "Can't explain on dis".

By the following evening - after Wahabi engaged in a series of further telephone calls and messages with Davis in Syria and Msaad - her flight was booked and a hotel in Istanbul for the following evening.

When she was caught at Heathrow the euros were found in large sums tightly rolled up and stuffed into her knickers as she tried to board the flight. But she immediately admitted to having the money when she was stopped.

Msaad - who was warned by the judge in court over her "associations" with a defendant in another trial at the Old Bailey - said she believed she had been "stitched up" by her friend. "She was not completely honest with me about where the money had come from," she said.

But it was not so much where the cash had come from, but where it was going, that was the concern of anti-terrorist police who - acting on intelligence - stopped her as she was about to board the flight to Istanbul.

Msaad and Wahabi are the first Britons to be tried for allegedly funding terrorism in Syria; other cases will follow. For her part, Msaad seemed oblivious that her activities would draw her into being accused of supporting terrorism.

She told the court that she had asked Davis in a telephone conversation: "Are you allowed to bring that amount of money over?"

"The way he sounded was really reassuring," she said. "He said; 'It's fine, you can bring that amount of money', I had no reason to doubt him."