Ghailani Guilty Of One Charge For 1998 US Embassy Bombs

The first Guantanamo detainee tried in a US civilian court has been found not guilty of all but one of 286 terror charges over the 1998 bombings of US embassies in Africa.
Tanzanian Ahmed Ghailani, 36, was found guilty of conspiracy to damage or destroy US property with explosives.

But he was cleared of many other counts including murder and murder conspiracy.

Ghailani faces a minimum of 20 years in prison. The verdict comes as the US weighs other civilian terror trials.

The attacks on US embassies in Tanzania and Kenya killed 224 people and were one of al-Qaeda's first international shows of strength. Four accused co-conspirators were convicted over the bombings in 2001 and sentenced to life in prison, but the Ghailani case concludes the first test of the Obama administration's decision to try some Guantanamo inmates in civilian courts rather than in military tribunals.

Defence lawyers had argued Ghailani was only a minor al-Qaeda operative who'd been framed by contaminated evidence.

The former Guantanamo Bay prisoner rubbed his face, smiled and hugged his lawyers after the jury left the courtroom. He will be sentenced on 25 January.

US Justice Department spokesman Mathew Miller said in a statement: "We respect the jury's verdict and are pleased that Ahmed Ghailani now faces a minimum of 20 years in prison and a potential life sentence for his role in the embassy bombings."