Underwear bomber's 2009 guilty plea will stand

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 13, 2014 at 1:52 pm •  Published: January 13, 2014
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DETROIT (AP) — An appeals court on Monday upheld the conviction and life sentence of a Nigerian man who pleaded guilty to trying to blow up a Detroit-bound airliner with a bomb in his underwear on Christmas 2009.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab pleaded guilty on the second day of trial in 2011 and expressed much pride in his suicide mission on behalf of al-Qaida. Yet he still challenged a series of decisions by U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds, especially her refusal to order a mental health exam.

The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found nothing wrong with Edmunds' handling of the case.

Abdulmutallab, now 27, trained in Yemen under Anwar al-Awlaki, a radical American-born cleric and one of the best-known al-Qaida figures. Abdulmutallab wore the explosive in his underwear aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253, which originated in Amsterdam with 281 passengers and a crew of 11 aboard.

"These actions show the deliberate, conscious, and complicated path Abdulmutallab chose to pursue in the name of martyrdom. ... The complexity behind Abdulmutallab's mission indicates the exact opposite of incompetence," Judge David McKeague wrote on behalf of a three-judge panel at the Cincinnati-based court.

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