A Muslim married couple from Toledo, Ohio have pleaded guilty to charges that they planned to provide money to Hezbollah, a plea deal that unfortunately spares them from the life sentences that they rightfully deserve.
Hor and Amera Akl planned to send $1 million to Hezbollah, the Lebanese-based Jihadist terrorist organization that bombed the US embassy and Marine Barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, kidnapped and murdered numerous Americans throughout the 1980s and has conducted large numbers of terrorist attacks on Israel for decades.
An FBI informant provided the couple with $200,000 for the first payment that was to be hidden in an SUV before they were arrested last June. Hor Akl went to Lebanon in March 2010 to arrange for the delivery of money and returned to the US and reported that he had met with Hezbollah officials.
The Akls, who hold dual citizenship in the United States and Lebanon, both pleaded guilty to conspiracy to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization. Hor Akl also pleaded guilty to money laundering, bankruptcy fraud and perjury charges.
Hor Akl now faces a sentence of a little more than seven years in prison, while his wife could receive up to four years. Both could have faced 30 years to life in prison if they would have been convicted on all charges at trial. It is most unfortunate that these two financial Jihadists will go free in just a few years after demonstrating clear allegiance to an enemy of the US that has killed hundreds of Americans. Seven years is no where near sufficient to rehabilitate such people. In fact, the available evidence indicates that prison time will just harden their beliefs and may even afford them an opportunity to spread their doctrine while in prison.