Chicago man sentenced in Mumbai terror attacks

Convicted terrorist David Headley will enter prison at 52 years of age and likely leave as he approaches 80. He could have received life in prison for the 12 terrorism crimes he pled guilty to, but instead he cooperated with authorities immediately following his 2009 arrest at O’Hare Airport. It made a difference in court today and Headley showed remorse for his actions.

His arrest came one year following the horrific attack on Mumbai that killed more than 160 people, including 6 Americans, one of them Sandeep or Sam Jeswani of Chicago. His mother tells WGN she misses her son every day. He was 43 when he was killed. She made it clear, even a 100 year prison sentence for Headley would not bring Sam back.

Prosecutors value the intelligence David Headley shared from the start. Even former US attorney Patrick Fitzgerald testified today saying the defendant’s early and forthcoming cooperation over the years was “unusual. “

Testimony inside the courtroom was emotional at times. Outside, foreign journalists packed the federal courthouse lobby. The Headley sentencing is a top story overseas says Times Now correspondent Shalini Parekh. The Indian broadcast outlet says viewers there are telling her 35 years is not enough.

Through a letter to the judge, David Headley claims to be a changed person.  A U.S. citizen of Pakistani descent, he told the judge he’s learning to embrace American values.

Security at the courthouse was tight today, certainly more than usual as more than a hundred people lined up hoping for a spot inside the courtroom today.

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