A federal jury on Thursday convicted a Muslim soldier on six charges in connection with a failed plot to blow up a Texas restaurant full of Fort Hood troops, his religious mission to get “justice” for the people of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Jurors in U.S. District Court in Waco deliberated a little more than an hour before finding Pfc. Naser Jason Abdo guilty of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempted murder of U.S. officers or employees, and four counts of possessing a weapon in furtherance of a federal crime of violence.
Abdo, 22, did not stand with his attorneys when jurors and the judge entered the room, and he showed no emotion when each of the six guilty verdicts was read by the court clerk. Abdo, who’s been accused of spitting blood on authorities escorting him and a jailer, wore a mask covering his nose and mouth throughout the trial.
He faces up to life in prison. U.S. District Judge Walter Smith is set to sentence Abdo in July.
Prosecutors said Abdo had already started making a bomb when he was detained at a Killeen motel last July after going AWOL from Fort Campbell, Ky. Authorities also found numerous bomb-making components, a loaded gun, 143 rounds of ammunition, a stun gun and other items in his backpack and motel room.
In a recorded police interview, Abdo said he was planning to pull off an attack in the Fort Hood area “because I don’t appreciate what my unit did in Afghanistan.”