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National Briefing / ILLINOIS

Man who plotted attack sentenced

October 01, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

A onetime admirer of Osama bin Laden who plotted a hand-grenade attack at a Chicago-area mall jammed with Christmas shoppers was sentenced to 35 years in prison.

Derrick Shareef of Rockford said he once admired Bin Laden as a sheik and a scholar but has changed his views and opposes violence.

"I am not an extremist," said Shareef, who was sentenced on his 24th birthday.

U.S. District Judge David H. Coar said a long sentence was warranted to deter others who might plan similar attacks. He could have sentenced Shareef to life in prison.

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