Terror suspect who died after being investigated ‘was a victim’, mother says

The mother of a teenage girl who apparently took her own life after being investigated for alleged right-wing terrorism has said her daughter should have been treated as a victim rather than facing criminal charges.

Rhianan Rudd was groomed and exploited online from the age of 14 by an American extremist as she found herself lured in to white supremacist views.

She was arrested and later faced criminal charges which were ultimately dropped because of the abuse.

Her mother Emily Carter told the BBC that her daughter should not have been charged.

She said: “They should have seen her as a victim rather than a terrorist.

“She’s a child, an autistic child. She should have been treated as a child that had been groomed and sexually exploited.”

Rhianan was arrested at the age of 14 in October 2020 after downloading a bomb-making manual and being referred to anti-radicalisation scheme Prevent.

She was later charged with various offences in April 2021 and accused of plotting an attack.

The charges were dropped several months later in December 2021 after evidence was submitted that she had been groomed and exploited online by an American extremist called Christoper Cook.

It was also claimed that she was influenced by her mother’s ex-boyfriend Dax Mallaburn, an American white supremacist, although her mother denied this.

After the criminal charges were dropped, Rhianan continued living at a children’s home in Nottinghamshire and again engaged with Prevent staff.

Workers at the home said she was preparing to take her GCSEs.

But in May 2022 she was found dead in her room having apparently taken her own life.

An inquest into her death was opened and adjourned in October and will continue later this year.