Make us your home page

Dutch-Iraqi sentenced for plot against troops

WASHINGTON — A federal judge Thursday sentenced a Dutch national to 25 years in prison for conspiring to kill Americans in Iraq.

Wesam al-Delaema, 36, the first person charged in a U.S. court with such crimes in Iraq, accepted a 25-year sentence in exchange for his guilty plea. He will serve his prison time in the Netherlands, where a Dutch judge will review his case and could reduce his sentence.

Delaema pleaded guilty in February to conspiring to kill Americans in Iraq. He admitted traveling to Iraq in 2003 to be a member of the group Mujaheddin From Fallujah. But prosecutors and defense lawyers fought for two days over whether Delaema could be considered a terrorist as defined under federal sentencing guidelines.

Delaema, who grew up in Fallujah and became a Dutch citizen in 2001, was videotaped with other insurgents planting roadside bombs designed to kill Americans.

Prosecutors conceded that they could not link the bombs on the video to any known U.S. casualties. But they noted that in the two weeks before and after the filming, eight U.S. soldiers were killed by roadside bombs in Fallujah.

Delaema returned to the Netherlands, and Dutch police raided his house and arrested him in May 2005. He was extradited to the United States on the condition that he be tried in a federal court and be sent home to serve his sentence.


Soldier gets life in prison for killing Iraqis

A U.S. Army soldier convicted in the 2007 execution-style killings of four bound and blindfolded Iraqis was sentenced Thursday at a military court in Vilseck, Germany, to life in prison. Master Sgt. John Hatley, 40, must have his rank reduced to private, forfeit all pay and receive a dishonorable discharge, a jury of eight Army officers and noncommissioned officers said.

Bomb claims: A suicide bomber detonated explosives inside an Iraqi army base Thursday in western Iraq, killing at least 16 people and wounding 40, Iraqi officials at the scene said. The Iraqi Defense Ministry said 17 people were wounded and none killed. It was not immediately possible to reconcile the reports.

Fuel theft: Former Army contractor Lee W. Dubois of Lexington, S.C., convicted of stealing $40 million worth of fuel from a military base in Iraq, is helping authorities in a global search for other suspects in the case, according to court records. A sentencing hearing scheduled for Thursday was postponed.

Dutch-Iraqi sentenced for plot against troops 04/16/09 [Last modified: Thursday, April 16, 2009 11:25pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Washington Post.

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours