Federal judge sentences Bin-Laden son-in-law to life in prison News
Federal judge sentences Bin-Laden son-in-law to life in prison

[JURIST] A federal judge on Tuesday sentenced Suleiman Abu Ghaith, son-in-law of Osama bin Laden, to life in US prison for terrorism-related charges. Ghaith, the highest ranking al Qaeda figure to face trial in a US court since the September 11 terrorist attacks, was found guilty [BBC report] in March of conspiring to provide and actually providing material support for terrorists. US District Judge Lewis Kaplan handed down the sentence after noting that Ghaith had expressed no remorse for his actions. During his sentencing the former imam stated [Reuters report] that he would ask for mercy from no one but God. He also argued that his role was purely a religious one, meant to encourage Muslims to rise against their oppressors. US Attorney General Eric Holder said that his trial served as further proof that such cases should be heard in civilian court.

In March a federal judge rejected [JURIST report] a request by Ghaith to delay his trial on the grounds that the government had confused him with a similarly-named detainee at Guantanamo Bay. In February Kaplan allowed [JURIST report] Abu Ghaith’s lawyers to submit questions to the self-proclaimed mastermind of the September 11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed [BBC profile; JURIST news archive], to determine if the defense will call him as a witness during the trial. Abu Ghaith’s trial, originally scheduled for September, was delayed [JURIST report] last year due to the effects of the US budget sequestration. Abu Ghaith pleaded not guilty [JURIST report] to charges of conspiracy to kill U.S. citizens during his March 2013 arraignment. Abu Ghaith was captured [JURIST report] the same month while he was reportedly travelling through Jordan on the way to his native Kuwait.