Cut

Indonesia says it reduced cleric's term due to age

AP News
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Posted: Oct 27, 2011 5:03 AM
Indonesia says it reduced cleric's term due to age

An Indonesian court says it slashed radical cleric Abu Bakar Bashir's prison sentence in part because of his advanced age.

The 72-year-old cleric, known as the spiritual leader of al-Qaida-linked militants, was found guilty in March of helping plan a terror attack and fund a jihadi training camp in westernmost Aceh province.

Bashir's lawyers appealed his 15-year sentence and on Oct. 20 judges quietly agreed to cut off six years.

Achmad Sobari of Jakarta High Court says that humanitarian considerations were factored in to the decision.

He said Thursday: "He is very old and judges thought it was appropriate to sentence him to nine years instead."

They also dropped the lesser charge of helping plan a terrorist act, citing lack of sufficient evidence.