Orlando shooter's wife pleads not guilty to aiding husband

The widow of Orlando nightclub shooter Omar Mateen pleaded not guilty Wednesday to federal charges of aiding and abetting her husband in the fatal bloodbath, and obstructing the investigation.

Salman, 30, stood before a federal judge in Oakland, California, under tight security. Salman will return to court in two weeks for a bail hearing. Salman could face life in prison if convicted of the charges.

Salman is now expected to be extradited to Florida where a grand jury indicted her and her husband shot attendees at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. The official says Noor Salman was taken into custody Monday, Jan. 16, 2017, in the San Francisco area and is due in court Tuesday in California.

Federal prosecutor Roger Handberg told magistrate judge Donna Ryu at an initial hearing on Tuesday that Salman was well aware her husband "was going to conduct the attack".

An undated photo of Omar Mateen. But she told The New York Times in November that she was unaware of his intentions until he sent her a 4 a.m. text message the night of the shooting, asking whether she had seen what happened on the news. "She is cold", he said. "She would not hurt a fly". She is also accused of misleading authorities after the attack.

The indictment, which was returned in Florida on January 12, gave no additional details on Salman's actions. It alleged Salman provided "material support or resources" to the Islamic State, to which Mateen pledged allegiance during his attack.

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He was killed in a shoot-out with SWAT officers. In addition to the 49 victims killed, 53 people were injured.

She was also charged with lying to Florida police officers and the FBI during the investigation.

The widow of the man who killed 49 people a year ago in a gay nightclub in the U.S. city of Orlando has been formally charged with a terror-related offence and obstruction of justice.

"It's a very private family, very quiet family", Franchi said. "Never had a problem".

Noor Salman's uncle spoke with reporters outside the courtroom on Tuesday morning saying, "I know she's innocent".

Charles Swift, her lead attorney, declined comment Wednesday outside court.

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