Rejecting a bid by convicted al Qaeda conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui to overturn his guilty plea, a federal appeals court affirmed the French citizen's terror conspiracy charges stemming from his role as an admitted terror camp trainee, member of the terrorist organization, and acknowledged flight-school his 'intent to obtain pilot training to further "al Qaeda's plan to use plans to kill Americans."
The appellate court's decision should not come as any big surprise to followers of Moussaoui's nearly 5-year period of litigation after the time he was arrested in Minnesota just weeks before the September 11, 2001 terror attacks in the United States.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit held that:
- Moussaoui knowingly and intelligently pleaded guilty to a host of federal terrorism charges, and while remaining sufficiently aware of the relevant circumstances and likely consequences of his actions.
- Moussaoui failed to show that prosecutors failed to produce exculpatory evidence that might have caused him to avoid pleading guilty, and instead go to trial, and didn't produce evidence showing that he was actually innocent.
You can read the 76-page opinion here: