He had the intent to kill 289 people, and has certainly shown no remorse, but wants to be let off easier because he happened to fail. “Underwear bomber challenges life sentence,” by Tresa Baldas for the Associated Press, February 13 (thanks to The Religion of Peace):
DETROIT — Confessed underwear bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is challenging his mandatory life in prison sentence, arguing in court documents filed Monday that a life sentence is “cruel and unusual punishment” and unconstitutional.
Abdulmutallab, who is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday, is facing a mandatory life in prison sentence after pleading guilty in October to trying to blow up a Detroit-bound airliner carrying nearly 300 people with a bomb hidden in his underwear. He pleaded guilty to numerous criminal charges, including attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, and conspiracy to commit terrorism.
The plot was foiled when his bomb malfunctioned.
“Given the circumstances and what did NOT occur in the instant matter it is fair to say that the mandatory minimum sentence of life is excessive and grossly disproportionate to the conduct,” Abdulmutallab wrote in court documents Monday. “Aside from the defendant no passengers suffered any serious injuries and there were no casualties.”
The government strongly disagrees, and has asked U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds to give him the maximum punishment.
“Defendant is an unrepentant, would-be mass murderer, who views his crimes as divinely inspired and blessed, and who views himself as under a continuing obligation to carry out such crimes,” prosecutors wrote Friday in a sentencing memo. “He attempted to murder 289 individuals, no sentence other than life. “¦ Could possibly reflect the seriousness of defendant’s conduct.”
In pushing for a stiff sentence, the government also disclosed Friday details about Abdulmutallab’s relationship with a well-known al-Qaida figure.
According to court documents, Abdulmutallab spent months pursuing American-born Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki in Yemen, where the two men eventually met and hatched out a plan to blow up an American airliner over U.S. soil on Christmas Day 2009. In the weeks leading up to the bombing attempt, the two men texted each other, spoke briefly on the phone and ended up spending three days together at al-Awlaki’s house planning the attack, the government wrote in court documents.
Al-Awlaki eventually led Abdulmutallab to a bomb maker, who trained the Nigerian defendant on how to ignite the bomb, according to court documents. It was al-Awlaki, the government says, who ultimately approved the martyrdom mission.
“Awlaki’s last instructions to him were to wait until the airplane was over the United States and then to take the plane down,” prosecutors wrote in court documents.