Jewish terrorist jailed in U.S. bomb plot
Al Jazeera Magazine | September 23 2005
A Jewish terrorist was sentenced to 20 years in jail on Thursday for his role in a 2001 bomb plot that targeted a Los Angeles mosque and the office of a U.S. Congressman, BBC reported.
FBI agents arrested Earl Krugel in November 2001 with another leader of a terrorist group called the Jewish Defense League, Irv Rubin, who committed suicide while awaiting trial in 2002.
Both were charged in December 2001 with conspiracy and weapons violations stemming from a plot to bomb the King Fahd Mosque in Culver City, a suburb of Los Angeles, and the offices of Congressman Darrel Issa, who is of Lebanese descent.
The plot was discovered before any attacks took place.
Investigators said at the time there was no relation between the Jewish Defense League plot and the September 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington.
Krugel, 62, admitted the charges.
He apologized in court for "all the sadness, pain and sorrow I've caused," saying that in he had "embarked on a course that was wrong-headed, dangerous and illegal," according to Reuters.
Krugel also pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate civil rights of Muslim worshippers at the mosque and to a weapons charge related to the plot against the Congressman.
In exchange, he was to escape trial on more serious charges linked to the bomb conspiracy.
According to court documents, Krugel and Rubin said they targeted Issa because he is of Lebanese descent and they wanted to send a "wake-up call" to Arabs, and prove that their group was "alive in a militant way".
Sentencing Krugel to the heaviest term he could get under a plea bargain, the U.S. District judge Ronald Lew said the crimes were "promoting hatred in the most vile way."
"This is just not acceptable in the United States," Lew said.
The group was set up in 1968 by a far-right U.S. rabbi, Meir Kahane, who supported the expulsion of all Palestinians from West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Kahane was assassinated in New York in 1990