Three Canadian terrorists have had their sentences substantially increased by the Ontario Court of Appeals. Mohammad Khawaja of Ottawa, who was convicted of financing a terrorist group based in Great Britain, had been sentenced to 10 years in prison last year. The Ontario court announced Friday that it would increase his sentence to life plus 24 years.
Khawaja was convicted of facilitating terrorism and developing an explosive device in connection with a jihadist plot to bomb London nightclubs and other locations in 2004. He claimed that he had been duped into designing and building electronic triggers for a British terror cell.
"He was obsessed with the cause, fanatic in his determination to establish Islamic dominance seemingly at any cost, and eager to assist in bringing about the destruction of Western culture and civilization," the appeals court said in rejecting Khawaja's appeal.
The court also dramatically increased the prison sentences for two members of the "Toronto 18" – a terrorist group that plotted to bomb Canada's intelligence service and stock exchange, as well as a military base. Saad Khalid's 14-year sentence was increased to 20 years and Saad Gaya's sentenced would go from 12 to 18 years.
The court also rejected an appeal from Toronto 18 ringleader Zakaria Amara, who sought a reduction in his sentence of life in prison. In dismissing Amara's appeal, the court noted that he had masterminded a plot that would likely result in "indiscriminate killing of innocent people."