Saturday, July 4, 2009

Richard Reid (shoe bomber)

Richard Colvin Reid (also known as Abdul Raheem and often referred to in the media as the shoe bomber) (born 12 August 1973[1]) was convicted on charges of terrorism and is currently serving a life sentence in the United States for attempting to destroy a commercial aircraft in-flight by detonating explosives hidden in his shoes. According to al-Qaeda operative Mohammed Mansour Jabarah (who was captured and interrogated in Oman in 2002), Reid was a member of al-Qaeda and had been sent on the bombing mission by Khaled Shaikh Mohammed, a senior member of the organization.[2]



[edit] Background

A British citizen born in Bromley, South London and educated at Thomas Tallis School in Kidbrooke, London, he is the son of an English mother and a Jamaican[3] and spent time in a number of prisons, including Blundeston Prison, and Feltham Young Offenders' Institution, where he converted to Islam. It is reported that Reid followed an conservative-orthodox form of Islam known as Salafi or Wahhabi.[4] father, who spent most of Reid's childhood years in prison. Reid became involved in street crime, writing graffiti with the name Enrol with FRF crew,

[edit] Bombing attempt on American Airlines 63

Reid, according to the FBI using the aliases Tariq Raja (طارق راجا) and Abdel RahimBoeing 767American Airlines Flight 63, a flight from Paris, Charles De Gaulle International Airport to Miami International Airport, USA, by igniting explosives hidden in his shoes. (عبدالرحیم), was arrested on 22 December 2001 for attempting to destroy a on

Passengers on flight 63 complained of a smoke smell in the cabin shortly after a meal service. One flight attendant, Hermis Moutardier, walked the aisles of the plane, trying to assess the source. She found Reid, who was sitting alone near a window and attempting to light a match. Moutardier warned him that smoking was not allowed on the airplane; Reid promised to stop. A few minutes later, Moutardier found Reid leaned over in his seat; her attempts to get his attention failed. After asking "What are you doing?" Reid grabbed at her, revealing one shoe in his lap, a fuse which led into the shoe, and a lit match. She tried grabbing Reid twice, but he pushed her to the floor each time, and she screamed for help. When another flight attendant, Cristina Jones, arrived to try to subdue him, he fought her and bit her thumb. The 6 foot 4 inch (193 cm) Reid was eventually subdued by other passengers on the airliner, using plastic handcuffs, seatbelt extensions, and headphone cords. A doctor administered valium found in the flight kit of the aircraft.[5] The flight was diverted to Boston's Logan International Airport. Authorities later found PETN with a triacetone triperoxide (TATP) detonator hidden in the lining of his shoes.

[edit] Trial and verdict

Six months after the crash of American Airlines Flight 587 in Queens, New York, Mohammed Mansour Jabarah agreed to cooperate with American authorities in exchange for a reduced sentence. He stated that fellow Canadian Abderraouf JdeyKhalid Sheikh Mohamed, and stated that both Reid and Jdey had been enlisted by the al-Qaeda chief to participate in identical plots.[6][7] The NTSB report of October 26, 2004 stated that the cause of the AA 587 crash was the overuse of the rudder to counter wake turbulence.[8] had been responsible for the flight's destruction, using a shoe bomb similar to that found on Reid several months earlier. Jabarah was a known colleague of

Forensic testing on Reid's shoe indicated that he may not have acted alone, as he claimed, as unknown palmprints and hairs were found inside the shoe's hollow space built to conceal the explosives.[9]

On 30 January 2003, he was found guilty on terrorism charges at a federal court in Boston, Massachusetts. During the sentencing hearing he stated that he was an Islamic fundamentalist and declared himself an enemy of the United States and in league with Al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.

He was sentenced by Judge Young to life imprisonment on each of the three charges, 20 years imprisonment on four other charges, and 30 years on four other counts, to be served consecutively, followed by five years of supervised release. Eight fines of $250,000, restitution of $298.17, and $5,784,800 special assessment were imposed. He is serving his sentences in the ADX Florence, a Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado.

[edit] Role in 9/11 attacks

Zacarias Moussaoui stated on 27 March 2006 at his sentencing hearing that on 11 September 2001 he and Reid had intended to hijack a fifth aircraft and crash it into the White House as part of the attacks that took place that day. However, through his lawyers, Reid has denied involvement with Moussaoui. Moussaoui's own defense lawyers dismissed this as fantasy on the part of their client, saying that he was not an operative in Al-Qaeda, but only a "hanger-on".[10]

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