PARIS — French authorities have charged a woman in relation to an alleged ISIS plot to attack this city’s famous Notre Dame Cathedral last week, the Paris prosecutor’s office said.
The woman, whose name was given as Ornella G., was charged Saturday night with “terrorist criminal association to commit crimes against people” and “attempted assassinations as an organized gang in connection with a terrorist enterprise,” the office said.
The prosecutor, Francois Molins, whose office handles terrorism investigations, said Friday that the woman’s fingerprints were found last Sunday in a car containing a half-dozen gas cylinders and left parked in front of Notre Dame, in the heart of Paris. Five of the cylinders were reportedly full. No detonator or firing device was found.
The woman was on France’s “S” list of radicalized individuals believed to pose a threat to national security and was known to have sought to travel to Syria, Molins said.
Arrested in southern France
Ornella G. was arrested on Tuesday near the city of Orange, in southern France, along with a companion who has since been released, the prosecutor’s office told CNN.
Authorities arrested three additional women — ages 19, 23 and 39 — near Paris Thursday in relation to the Notre Dame plot. French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said the three women were radicalized and likely had been planning an “imminent and violent” attack.
One of three women had a letter in her purse swearing allegiance to ISIS and declaring: “I am attacking you in your lands in order to terrorize you,” Molins said.
In the letter, she said she was answering the call of Abu Mohammad al-Adnani, according to Molins.
Adnani, one of the highest-ranking figures in ISIS, was killed in late August.
Another of the terror cell members, identified as Sarah H., was supposed to marry Larossi Abballa, the man who killed two police officers in Magnanville, France, in June.
After police shot and killed Abballa, she then was supposed to marry Adel Kermiche, who killed a priest in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray, France, in July before he was killed by police.
Minor arrested in separate terror plot
France has been under a state of emergency since the Paris terror attacks in November, and authorities have struggled to monitor thousands of domestic radicals on their radar.
In a case unconnected to the Notre Dame plot, French authorities arrested a minor on Saturday on suspicion of preparing an imminent terror attack involving knives and bladed weapons, a source who has been briefed on the case told CNN.
The minor was arrested in the 12th district of Paris and was being questioned by the General Directorate of Internal Security, the source said.
France has weathered a string of deadly Islamist terror attacks over the summer, most devastatingly the Bastille Day attack in Nice.