Underwear bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab
Underwear bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab Reuters

The Underwear Bomber, Nigerian Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, was sentenced to life in prison without parole by a federal court in Detroit on Thursday afternoon.

Abdulmutallab had previously pleaded guilty to eight counts of terrorism and attempted murder. He received the maximum sentence.

The defendant has stated and it is clear that he has enormous motivation to carry out another terrorist attack, Judge Nancy Edmunds said before sentencing. This was an act of terrorism that cannot be quibbled with.

No one but Abdulmutallab was injured when he tried to blow up a Detroit-bound plane carrying 289 people on Christmas Day in 2009. Abdulmutallab, who was flying into the United States from Amsterdam, had sown a chemical bomb into his underwear as part of a plot organized by al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.

His family -- a relatively well-to-do Nigerian family -- has appealed to the U.S. government to review the life sentence.

We strongly appeal to the American justice department to review the life sentence, his parents stated. We also appeal to the Federal Republic of Nigeria to continue with their support and engage with the American government to ensure that a review is made.

Not one passenger lost his or her life. Not one passenger suffered life-threatening injuries, assistant defense lawyer Anthony Chambers added, asserting that the life sentence was unconstitutional.

Abdulmutallab comes from Lagos, the richest and largest city in Nigeria, as well as an overwhelming Christian one. He is the son of a banker and attended University College London, where he studied engineering.

My life and lives of Muslims have also changed due to U.S. attacks, Abdulmutallab told the court ahead of his sentencing.

I am not a U.S. government patty [sic].