Said Namouh, a Moroccan living in Quebec, was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for his role in a plot to bomb targets in Germany and Austria. He was convicted last year on four charges - one count each of participating in a terrorist act, facilitating a terrorist act, conspiracy to detonate an explosive device, and committing extortion for a terrorist group.
Evidence presented at his trial showed that Namouh warned Germany and Austria that they would be attacked if they did not withdraw troops from Afghanistan. Possible targets included the Vienna-based Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, German and Austrian government officials and politicians, and the Euro 2008 soccer tournament.
"The evidence shows his enthusiasm to participate in the project," sentencing Quebec Court Judge Claude Leblond said. "In fact, he was probably destined to be the suicide bomber."
Canadian prosecutor Dominique Dudemaine said Namouh's plot - which included conspirators based in Europe - was thwarted just in time. "When he was arrested…he was in the process of obtaining his visa to leave the country," Dudemaine said. "He was ready to work."
Namouh married a Canadian woman and moved from Morocco to Quebec in 2003. After they divorced three years later, he moved to the Quebec town of Trois-Rivieres, where he started to spend considerable time on jihadist websites.
"Terrorism is in our blood, and with it we will drown the unjust," Namouh said in one Internet chat. In another, which occurred shortly before his arrest in 2007, he said his dream was to die a martyr and to have his son - who is 10 years old and now lives in Morocco – grow up to be a suicide bomber.
Namouh also distributed ransom demands for the kidnappers of a British journalist in Gaza. He worked with the Global Islamic Media Front, an Al Qaeda propaganda organ.
Namouh will be eligible for parole in 10 years. Last month, Zakaria Amara, who masterminded a plot to blow up Toronto-area landmarks, also received a life sentence.