Defense: Terror Suspect Mehanna Should Get 6.5 Years Max

BOSTON — Defense lawyers for a Sudbury man convicted of conspiring to help al-Qaida say he should not get more than 6.5 years in prison.

In a sentencing memo filed Monday, Tarek Mehanna’s lawyers say there was no evidence Mehanna’s actions actually threatened U.S. security interests.

Mehanna, who was born in the United States and grew up in the wealthy Boston suburb, was convicted in December of four terror-related charges and three charges of lying to authorities.

Prosecutors said he tried to help al-Qaida by translating and distributing publications and also tried unsuccessfully to get training at a terrorist camp in Yemen so he could fight U.S. soldiers in Iraq.

Prosecutors are expected to file their sentencing memo Tuesday, and federal sentencing guidelines call for a life sentence for the convictions. Mehanna is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday.

Seeking leniency, Mehanna, who’s being held in solitary confinement, has written to Judge George O’Toole to describe how much he enjoyed working as a teacher.

With reporting by The Associated Press and the WBUR Newsroom

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  • Guest

    You have a decimal error…it should be 65 years. 

  • outraged

    Once again , this seem like more fear mongering and assault on Muslims civil liberties and rights 
    by the FBI. This man has done no harm to anyone as his defense team has pointed out……

    And this seems like nothing new as one retired New York lawyer found when he traced another
    case in the New Jersey area against two Muslim men who were  set up by the FBI (See URL below.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q_U7nDXrQT8

    It seems shameful that any  judge or court of law would accept such hearsay evidence after the 
    disaster of Iraq’s fake WMDs. 

    I hope those in the  Muslim Community will come out and denounce the FDI’s charges against 
    Mehanna and consider bringing a case of Racial Profiling against the FBI. This should help
    the assault on Muslim rights -it seems going on today….

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