An Alabama terrorism plot was foiled after two men, accused of plotting a “well-researched plan” for holy war jihad on American soil, were each given 15-year jail terms. Reuters reported on Friday that a federal judge in Alabama who sentenced the men said their lack of remorse made it likely they would conspire to commit such acts again.
Randy “Rasheed” Wilson and Mohammad Abdul Rahman Abukhdair, both in their mid-20s, were each sentenced to 15 years in prison by U.S. District Judge Kristi DuBose for “conspiring to provide material support to terrorists.”
Attorneys for the men asserted to the court that the pair only said disturbing things and did not actually carry anything out. For that, they should not be punished, the defense team said.
"I ask you to punish Randy Wilson, not Osama bin Laden or any of these other people," said Wilson's attorney, Dom Soto. "This is basically a case of outing Randy Wilson because he said some terrible things."
Judge DuBose saw through that argument, convicting the men with the maximum amount of time allowed under federal guidelines.
"Most people in this courtroom support people's right to have whatever beliefs they want," DuBose said. "But when a religion requires you to murder, that is crossing the line."
The two men were in the midst of carrying out a plan to leave the U.S. and plot a terrorist act with support overseas when they were arrested in 2012, attempting to leave the country via a flight to Morocco. Wilson and Abukhdair had been under FBI watch since 2011, and taped conversations between the men spoke of “killing Americans,” and the best country to relocate to in order to “defend Islam.”