Thursday, March 20, 2014

Fla. Man Is Guilty of Trying to Join Al-Qaeda; Planned to Join in Yemen, But Caught in Jordan

A 20-year-old Orlando, Florida man pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiring to travel to the Middle East to join an al-Qaeda terrorist group and receive military training as part of a holy war (jihad), the Reuters website reports today (March 20, 2014).

Shelton Thomas Bell admitted he recruited an unnamed juvenile and the two flew to the Middle East in 2012 with the intention of joining the Ansar al-Sharia group, according to his plea agreement.

The two traveled to Amman, Jordan -- in an effort to reach Yemen -- but were deported by Jordan to the United States.

Bell faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and a $500,000 fine; however, federal prosecutors in the plea deal agreed to recommend a lighter sentence to the judge. No date was set for sentencing.

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