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Jurors Begin Deliberating Mehanna Terror Trial

This article is more than 11 years old.
Defense attorney Jay Carney giving closing argument. (Margaret Small)
Defense attorney Jay Carney giving closing argument. (Margaret Small)

Jurors have begun reviewing the evidence against a Sudbury man on trial in federal court on terror charges. If Tarek Mehanna is convicted, he faces life in prison.

Jury deliberations began Friday afternoon after jury instructions and closing arguments from both sides. The jury will review seven criminal charges; three charges of making false statements to the FBI, and four terrorism charges.

In closing statements, the prosecution said that Mehanna clearly went to Yemen to try to train to kill Americans. Lawyers cited friends, instant messages and consensual recordings. When the mission failed, the government says Mehanna waged his version of jihad by translating al-Qaida videos and writings.

Mehanna's defense lawyers closed with the argument that their client traveled to Yemen in search of religious and language studies. The defense lawyers said Mehanna didn't work for al-Qaida because he was kicked off a pro-al-Qaida website for being too moderate.

Jurors must sift through complicated arguments; such as what particular Islamic ideology Mehanna subscribed to and what his intent was when he traveled to Yemen.

This program aired on December 16, 2011.


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