An al-Qaeda member who plotted a bombing in England was sentenced by a U.S. federal court on Tuesday to 40 years in prison.
Abid Naseer, 29, was arrested in 2009 in a thwarted bombing plot in Manchester, England. Though arrested in England, Naseer was extradited to the U.S., thanks to a law that allows federal prosecutors to try foreigners even when the incident in question happens overseas.
Naseer was convicted in March of aiding terrorism and conspiring with al-Qaeda. He had faced a maximum sentence of life in prison.
“I hope you remember that an American court gave you a lifesaver,” Judge Raymond J. Dearie of Federal District Court in Brooklyn, N.Y. said at the sentencing on Tuesday, the New York Times reports.
According to the Times, Dearie said in court that he struggled to comprehend how Naseer, raised in a “loving” middle-class Pakistani family, had decided to join al-Qaeda as an adult.
“How you go from that to this, as much as I searched to try to understand, I don’t,” he said.