Underwear bomber’s appeal starts

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underwear bomber

Reuters

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is shown in this file booking photograph released by the U.S. Marshals Service. A federal judge sentenced the Nigerian man to life in prison for trying to blow up a US airliner bound for Detroit on Christmas Day in 2009 with a bomb hidden in his underwear.REUTERS/US Marshals Service/Handout/Files

Ddetroit - A federal appeals court has heard arguments in the case of a Nigerian man who tried to blow up a Detroit-bound jet on Christmas 2009.

An attorney for Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab says his guilty plea should be thrown out and a mental competency hearing ordered. Travis Rossman also argues that a life sentence for a young man is extreme, especially when no one except Abdulmutallab was seriously injured aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253.

An appeals court in Cincinnati heard arguments Thursday on those issues and more. There was no immediate decision.

Abdulmutallab, now 26, pleaded guilty to trying to blow up the plane with a bomb sewn into his underwear. He told authorities that he trained in Yemen under a high-ranking member of al-Qaida.

Sapa-AP


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