Is it possible to commit terrorist acts while in jail? Federal prosecutors argue it is not only possible, but actual:
A reputed former leader of Al Qaeda who is serving 32 years in prison for stabbing a jail guard in 2000 must be resentenced, a federal appeals panel in Manhattan ruled on Tuesday, because a judge wrongly concluded that the man’s crime did not meet the legal standard for terrorism.
Federal prosecutors, who argued that the attack met the standard for terrorism, had sought a life sentence for the defendant, Mamdouh Mahmud Salim. Officials have described him as a founder of Al Qaeda and a former top aide to Osama bin Laden.
Prosecutors said that the stabbing was part of a fruitless plan to take hostages and escape from the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Lower Manhattan. Mr. Pepe, who was stabbed in the eye, was left with severe brain damage.
At the time of the stabbing, Mr. Salim was awaiting trial in a terrorist conspiracy case stemming from the 1998 bombings of two American embassies in East Africa, in which 224 people were killed. He later testified that he had become frustrated with his lawyers, and stabbed Mr. Pepe so he could take his keys, unlock a visitors’ room, and attack his lawyers so they would withdraw from his case.
I wonder if any future jail plots for escape will result in charges of terrorism against the community?