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7 Men Convicted In Plot To Bomb U.S., British Targets

Updated:
LONDON (AP) _ Seven men convicted of joining in a terrorist plot to bomb U.S. financial landmarks and London targets were sentenced from 15 to 26 years in prison Friday.

All were convicted of assisting in a plot led by Dhiren Barot, who was sentenced to life in prison last year.

``Barot was the instigator of this terrorist planning,'' said Justice Neil Butterfield, presiding in Woolwich Crown Court. ``Each one of you was recruited by Barot and assisted him at his request.''

Barot, 35, a British convert to Islam, was convicted of planning to use vehicles packed with explosives to attack such targets as the International Monetary Fund in Washington and Citigroup headquarters in New York as well as London hotels and train stations.

The judge told the defendants the suffering their families would experience with their incarceration ``is but a tiny fraction of the suffering that would have been experienced had your plans been translated into reality.''

Sentenced were: Abdul Aziz Jalil, 26 years; Junade Feroze, 22 years; Mohammed Naveed Bhatti and Nadeem Tarmohamed, 20 years each; Zia ul Haq, 18 years; Omar Abdur Rehman, and Qaisar Shaffi, 15 years each.

Shaffi was convicted of conspiracy to murder after a monthlong trial that ended earlier this week. The other six pleaded guilty in April to conspiracy to cause explosions likely to endanger life.

Barot's sentence was reduced from 40 years to 30 years last month as a court ruled that the plot had not progressed far enough to merit the stiffer punishment.

He was described by Britain's top anti-terrorist detective as ``a long-term, dedicated, committed member of al-Qaida.''
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