Image: Katherine Lester
Katherine Lester, 17, was stopped in Jordan on her way to the West Bank to meet a 20-year-old she talked to on
updated 9/7/2006 8:22:49 PM ET 2006-09-08T00:22:49

A teenager who flew to the Middle East to be with a man she met on the social network site has detailed her online romance and the fallout her trip caused in Seventeen magazine.

In the article in the October issue of Seventeen, which hit newsstands Tuesday, 17-year-old Katherine Lester writes about how she has worked to regain her parents' trust since her romance was revealed and became international news.

"While my parents were supportive through the legal issues, I can see how much our relationship has changed because of what I did — in good ways and bad," Lester wrote. "No matter how many times I say I'm sorry, I can't get back their trust."

Following her return, the Tuscola County prosecutor's office filed a runaway juvenile petition against her in family court. But prosecutors withdrew the petition under a deal with Lester and her parents.

Lester developed an online romance with Abdullah Jimzawi, a 20-year-old Palestinian who lives in the West Bank town of Jericho. For months, she kept the relationship secret before disappearing June 5 from her mother's home in Gilford, 80 miles north of Detroit.

"I couldn't imagine going halfway across the globe," she wrote in the magazine. "But I realized I didn't want to wait either."

Lester, then 16, was en route to Tel Aviv, Israel, airport a few days later when she was intercepted in Amman, Jordan, by U.S. authorities who seized her passport and put her on a flight back to the United States.

Her father, Terry Lester, who lives near Flint, Mich., has declined requests from The Associated Press to interview his daughter. He said Thursday that she is back in high school for her senior year.

‘Love is full of tests’
Katherine Lester wrote in the magazine that she and Jimzawi talk daily on the telephone for about an hour. And she reiterated her plans to marry him.

"Although a lot of people — including my parents — don't believe us, we really do love each other and we are going to get married someday," she wrote. "Love is full of tests, and we're going to pass ours."

MySpace, a social networking Web site popular with teenagers, has raised concerns among U.S. authorities, with scattered accounts of sexual predators targeting minors on the site. But Jimzawi has said his love for Lester is pure.

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