COLUMBUS, Ohio - An Ohio man was sentenced Thursday to 20 years in prison for plotting terrorist attacks against the United States, officials said.
Christopher Paul, 44, pleaded guilty to conspiring to use weapons of mass destruction in June, the Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch reported. He was sentenced by Judge Gregory Frost in Columbus.
The newspaper reported that Paul was considered by the U.S. attorney's office to be a member of the al-Qaida terrorist network who spent more than a decade traveling to the Middle East and Europe to assist terrorists and prepare for a "holy war."
Paul grew up as Paul Kenyatta Laws. He reportedly converted to Islam in the late 1980s and first went to Pakistan and Afghanistan in the early 1990s, joining al-Qaida and training as a terrorist.
Federal agents said they found a "master list of contact numbers for senior al-Qaida leadership and other radical Islamic fundamentalists and operative worldwide" in a search of his home in April 2007.
The newspaper noted that Paul is the third in a group of Ohio acquaintances who have been sentenced to prison for terrorist activity.
© 2009 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.