A federal judge in Asheville, North Carolina, sentenced a 21-year-old man, Justin Sullivan, to life in prison for plotting an ISIS-like attack on America.
Court documents indicated Sullivan wanted to unveil an “Islamic State of North America” by attacking a concert or club and killing hundreds.
“Sullivan showed no reaction as U.S. District Judge Martin Reidinger handed down his sentence. He stood silently in a brown inmate jumpsuit, his left shoulder slouched. …
“During rambling, muffled remarks to the judge, Sullivan told Reidinger he was not ‘a cold-blooded killer.’
“During a news conference afterward, U.S. Attorney Jill Westmoreland Rose gave her response. ‘I believe the facts prove otherwise.’
“Sullivan’s sentence was part of an agreement that led to his guilty plea last November to one count of planning a terrorist act transcending national borders.
“As he left the courtroom, the pale, mustached defendant turned and cast a quick glance toward his parents, who sat a few rows behind him. Rich Sullivan, a retired Marine captain, responded with a small wave.
“It was a Rich Sullivan phone call in the spring of 2015 that first alerted authorities to his son’s possible ties to the Islamic State, a worldwide terrorist group commonly known as ISIS or ISIL. A few months later, Justin Sullivan offered to pay an undercover FBI agent posing as an ISIS sympathizer to have his parents killed out of fear that they would thwart his plans.
“Throughout the two-hour hearing, Rich and Eleanor Sullivan dabbed their eyes with handkerchiefs as their son’s fate unfolded before them.
“Afterward, Rich Sullivan discussed the difficulty of balancing blood and country.
“‘As parents, we’re not happy,’ said Sullivan, wearing a Marine lapel pin on his dark blue suit, his eyes reddened by tears. ‘As Americans, we accept what just happened.'”
Sullivan plotted the attack two years ago.
As News 13, the local ABC affiliate reported, court files indicate he had researched how to manufacture silencers for firearms and had asked an undercover FBI agent to actually build him some silencers.
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