Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, D.C. Area Terrorist, Convicted
Ahmed Omar Abu Ali was convicted yesterday of conspiring with al Qaeda to assassinate President Bush.
A member of the jury that convicted an American Muslim student of plotting with al-Qaida to assassinate President Bush said she was struck by the man’s videotaped confession, in which he laughed and pantomimed the use of an assault rifle. “It was very telling,” Nancy Ramsden said Tuesday after the federal jury convicted 24-year-old Ahmed Omar Abu Ali on all counts. “It was almost sort of a joke for him.” Abu Ali, a U.S. citizen born to Jordanian parents, could get life in prison when he is sentenced Feb. 17 on charges including conspiracy to assassinate the president, conspiracy to hijack aircraft and providing support to al-Qaida.
The jury rejected his claim that Saudi security officers whipped and tortured him into a false confession after his arrest in June 2003, when he was enrolled at the Islamic University of Medina.
Abu Ali, who was raised in Falls Church, Va., swallowed hard before the verdict was read but otherwise showed little emotion. The jury had deliberated for 2 1/2 days.
It continues to amaze that someone raised in an affluent community in the United States could be drawn to al Qaeda.