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Mass. man given 17 1/2 years on terror counts

Mass. man convicted in plot to help al-Qaida sentenced to 17 1/2 years By The Associated Press

BOSTON (AP) ' A Massachusetts man convicted of conspiring to help al-Qaida has been sentenced to 17 1/2 years in prison.

Tarek Mehanna, an American, grew up in the wealthy Boston suburb of Sudbury. He learned his punishment Thursday in U.S. District Court on four terror-related charges and three counts of lying to authorities.

The 29-year-old Mehanna faced up to life in prison. Prosecutors recommended a 25-year sentence, while Mehanna's lawyers said he should get no more than 6 1/2 years in prison.

Mehanna was convicted of traveling to Yemen to seek training in a terrorist camp with the intention of going on to Iraq to fight U.S. soldiers there. Prosecutors say that when that plan failed, Mehanna returned to the United States and began disseminating materials online promoting violent jihad.

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