The terrorist in charge of the Islamic State's finances in Mosul managed to escape the war-torn Iraqi city stealing millions of dollars from the jihadi network, local media reported Thursday.
Abu Mu’taz Qahtani also swiped "important documents" from ISIS, a source told al-Sumaria News. The news agency reported that Qahtani served multiple roles with ISIS, also supervising its female suicide bombers.
He reportedly escaped with a German woman who'd helped recruit new terrorists. The pair's whereabouts were unknown, according to The Sun.
The reported theft of millions from ISIS represents the latest blow to the terrorists' coffers. Analysts point out that as U.S.-backed Iraqi forces regain territory from the jihadi network, its revenues from oil and gas have plummeted well below the $1 billion it earned during its peak in 2014.
Still, ISIS has earned cash through other means, from hiking taxes to robbing banks.
ISIS has relied more often on “traditional methods we see Al Qaeda using - whether it’s deep-pocket donors, whether it’s charities, whether it’s NGOs, whether it’s criminal activity,” Daniel Glaser, the Treasury Department’s assistant secretary for terrorist financing, said recently.
Iraq's special forces say they have completed their objectives east of Mosul and are waiting on other forces to advance before pushing closer to the city.
Brig. Gen. Haider Fadhil said Thursday that his forces were waiting for other fighting units to push up from the south in order to further isolate Mosul before they entered the city. He says "the operation has not been stopped and is proceeding as planned."
Iraqi forces have been battling ISIS around the town of Shura, some 25 miles south of Mosul, in recent days. Iraqi officials have said the offensive is proceeding according to plan and that some operations are ahead of schedule.
The push to retake Iraq's second largest city from the militants, which began on Oct. 17, is the largest operation launched by Iraq since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.