Moussaoui eligible for death penalty, jury says

April 3, 2006 23:46

A federal jury found al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui eligible Monday to be executed, deciding that his lies to FBI agents led directly to at least one death in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Moussaoui now faces a second phase of his sentencing trial to determine if he actually will be put to death for his role in the worst terrorist assault on the United States. The nine men and three women of the jury will hear testimony on whether the 37-year-old Frenchman, who was in jail at the time of the attack, deserves to be executed for his role. The testimony will include families of September 11 victims who will describe the human impact of the al-Qaida mission that flew four jetliners into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a Pennsylvania field. Court-appointed defense lawyers, whom Moussaoui has tried to reject, will summon experts to suggest he is schizophrenic after an impoverished childhood during which he faced racism in France over his Moroccan ancestry.

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