source: Hartford Courant
published: 16 July 2014
A British engineer who U.S. prosecutors claim pioneered the use of the Internet as a support system for terrorists in Europe and the Middle East was sentenced to 12 1/2 years in prison Wednesday but could be free in months because of time served and other considerations.
U.S. District Judge Janet C. Hall sentenced Babar Ahmad, 40, who pleaded guilty last year to charges of conspiracy and providing material support to terrorists. She gave Ahmad credit for the 10 years he has been held while fighting extradition to the U.S. and awaiting sentencing. With time off for good behavior, he could be free by year’s end, one of his lawyers said.
Federal prosecutors argued during a three-day hearing that Ahmad should be sentenced to 25 years because the government suspects that he is unrepentant and represents a continuing, potential threat. But in a long explanation of her sentence, Hall criticized the government’s evidence and concluded that Ahmad is no longer a danger, here or in Europe.