JFK airport terrorist attack conspirator sentenced to 15 years in prison

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Abdel Nur, a Guyanese national, has been sentenced by a U.S. district court judge to 15 years in prison for providing material support to a terrorist group that had conspired to attack John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, by exploding fuel tanks and the fuel pipeline under the airport.

On June 29, 2010, Nur had pleaded guilty to providing material support to Abdul Kadir, Russell Defreitas and Kareem Ibrahim who had plotted to carry out an act of terrorism by exploding fuel tanks and the fuel pipeline under the JFK Airport. The attack, the terrorists believed, would cause extensive damage to the airport and to the New York economy, besides killing several people.

Kadir and Defreitas were convicted last August and on Dec. 15, 2010, Kadir was sentenced to life in prison.

The sentencing of Defreitas is scheduled for Feb. 17.

The trial of Ibrahim is yet to begin.

According to the evidence produced in court, Nur had provided material support to the terrorist plot by attempting to locate al Qaeda explosives expert Adnan Gulshair el Shukrijumah, and by introducing the plotters and presenting the plot to Yasin Abu Bakr, the notorious leader of the Trinidadian militant group Jamaat Al Muslimeen, who had previously engaged in violent terrorist attacks aimed at overthrowing the government of Trinidad and Tobago.

United States District Judge Dora L. Irizarry of the Eastern District of New York had handed down the sentence.

 The 2007 John F. Kennedy Intl. Airport attack plot  

In 2007, FBI agents and the Homeland Security officials in New York had foiled a plot hatched by four people to blow up jet fuel supply tanks and pipelines at John F. Kennedy Intl. Airport in Queens, New York.

The four men - Abdel Nur, Abdul Kadir, Russell Defreitas and Kareem Ibrahim - had nicknamed the plot Chicken Farm and the attack was aimed at severely damaging the airport and killing many people, which in turn, would have paralyzed New York and derailed its economy.

To execute the plot, they had obtained satellite photographs of JFK airport and its facilities from the Internet and had traveled frequently among the United States, Guyana and Trinidad to discuss their plans and solicit the financial and technical assistance of others.

However, the plot could not be carried out because when they attempted to recruit a person, who was an undercover law enforcement official, he recorded many of their conversations and alerted the police.

According to the FBI, Defreitas and others had reportedly targeted the airport because it was named after John K. Kennedy, the American president who was assassinated in 1963.

Defreitas, who is the alleged ringleader and worked for a time at the airport, had said in a tapped telephone conversation that this plot was bigger the Twin Tower plot as it can destroy the economy of America for some time.

Anytime you hit Kennedy, it is the most hurtful thing to the United States. To hit John F. Kennedy, wow...they love JFK - he's like the man, Defreitas had allegedly said.

If you hit that, this whole country will be in mourning. It's like you can kill the man twice, Defreitas allegedly added.

Defreitas, a United States citizen and native of Guyana, was arrested in Brooklyn, New York. Kadir, a citizen of Guyana, and Ibrahim, a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago, were arrested in Trinidad on June 3, 2007.

Nur surrendered to police two days later in Trinidad and all three were extradited to the United States on June 25, 2008.

On Aug. 2, 2010, Kadir and Defreitas were convicted in the terrorist plot. Kadir, who was a former member of Guyana's parliament and a chemical engineer by profession, was sentenced to life on Dec. 15, 2010 and the sentencing of Defreitas is scheduled for Feb. 17.

Nur was sentenced on Jan. 13 to 15 years in prison.

The trial of Ibrahim is yet to begin.

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