Ahmed Omar Abu Ali: Life Sentence For Bush Assassination Plot
Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, a 28-year-old American who is a member of al-Qaeda, was sentenced to life today, July 27, 2009, for his plot to assassinate George W. Bush.
Ahmed Omar Abu Ali first came under the radar of the U.S. government in 2003, when he was studying in Saudi Arabia and the Saudi authorities arrested him during a crackdown on al-Qaeda. Ahmed Omara Abu Ali was initially sentenced to 30 years in prison in 2005; however, the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond felt the sentence given to Ahmed Omar Abu Ali was insufficient and ordered a new hearing.
[U.S. District Judge Gerald Bruce] Lee said Monday the new sentence takes into account that Abu Ali has never renounced al-Qaida or terrorist activities, and that he could be a threat to the American public if released. Abu Ali has been in solitary confinement at a federal prison in Florence, Colo.
However, Ahmed Omar Abu Ali responded vehemently to the life sentence and his lawyer plans to appeal it.
In a statement to the judge, Abu Ali said that he had been tortured by authorities in Saudi Arabia into giving a confession.
"This was a case manufactured by the Saudi torture regime and expedited to the United States for trial," he said.
"I would like to remind you that you too will appear before the divine tribunal with me and everyone else.
"That day there will be no lawyers ... If you are comfortable with that, you can decree what you will."
Ahmed Omar Abu Ali was born in Houston and grew up in Virginia. Although Ahmed Omar Abu Ali initially studied engineering at the University of Maryland, Ahmed Omar Abu Ali withdrew during his second semester to study Islamic Theology in Saudi Arabia. Ahmed Omar Abu Ali joined al-Qaeda in 2002, while he was in Saudi Arabia.