Moussaoui appeals life sentence, refusal of new trial Jeannie Shawl at 11:42 AM ET
[JURIST] September 11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui [JURIST news archive] has appealed [notice of appeal, PDF] both his life sentence [JURIST report] on conspiracy charges and US District Judge Leonie Brinkema's decision to deny his motion to withdraw his guilty plea [JURIST reports] and grant a new trial. Moussaoui was sentenced to life in prison earlier this month at the conclusion of a two-month sentencing trial [case docket]. He pleaded guilty [JURIST report] in April 2005 to conspiracy charges [indictment] in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks, including conspiracy to commit acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries, conspiracy to destroy aircraft and conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction. Brinkema refused to allow Moussaoui to withdraw his plea [order, PDF] under Fed. R. Crim. P. 11(e) [text], which prevents defendants from withdrawing a guilty plea after a court has imposed a sentence. The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit will consider Moussaoui's appeal. Reuters has more.
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