Australian Court Sentences Five for Planning Terrorist Acts
An Australian court earlier today sentenced five men who were found guilty of amassing a stockpile of dangerous chemicals and firearms in connection with their purported goal of executing an act of terrorism. Although the defendants were ultimately unable to successfully carry out the planned attack, each was given a sentence of 23 to 28 years in prison for their role.
At their trial last October, all five pleaded not guilty to the allegations. The men reportedly planned the attacks from July 2004 to November 2005, largely due to their increasing anger over Australia’s support of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Their intended targets have not been specified (at least not publicly).
The five men – whose age ranges from 25 to 44 – received their prison sentences today in the New South Wales Supreme Court. At the sentencing hearing, Justice Anthony Whealy emphasized the court’s position that they are still dangerous and unapologetic. In addition to their dissatisfaction over the War on Terror in the Middle East, Justice Whealy believes the men planned the terrorist acts due to their “intolerant, inflexible religious conviction.”