April 19, 2005


Moussaoui Planning To Admit 9/11 Role (Jerry Markon, April 19, 2005, Washington Post)

Zacarias Moussaoui has notified the government that he intends to plead guilty to his alleged role in the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks and could enter the plea as early as this week if a judge finds him mentally competent, sources familiar with the case said yesterday.

Moussaoui's plan to plead guilty comes over his attorneys' objections and still has several obstacles -- including Moussaoui's own whim. The French citizen, the only person charged in the United States in the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, tried to plead guilty in 2002, claiming an intimate knowledge of the plane hijackings. But he rescinded his plea a week later. His mental state has been an issue in the case ever since, and U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema in Alexandria is scheduled to meet with Moussaoui this week to determine if he has the mental capacity to enter a plea now, the sources said.

In recent letters to the government and to Brinkema, Moussaoui said he is willing to accept the possibility of a death sentence, which sources said could resolve a key point of contention: Prosecutors are unlikely to drop their insistence on capital punishment. If Brinkema accepts a plea, she would then probably set a death penalty trial, at which jurors would decide if Moussaoui should be executed.

One of the things that seems to have confused folks is that there were several 20th hijackers, because they kept getting caught for one thing or another, but there was never any serious doubt that Moussaoui was part of the conspiracy.

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 19, 2005 10:40 AM

From his own point of view death is too good for him. Solitary for life would be the ticket.

Posted by: Genecis at April 19, 2005 2:35 PM