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Terrorists Sentenced for Trying to Blow Up Plane With Gay Brother

Etihad

Khaled and Mahmoud Khayat assembled a bomb and hid it inside a meat grinder in their brother's luggage.

Khaled and Mahmoud Khayat have been sentenced to 40 and 36 years of jail time, respectively, for a failed plot to blow up a plane carrying their gay brother, reports the Australian Broadcasting Network.

In July 2017, the Khayats devised a plan to stow a bomb inside a meat grinder, which would be carried inside the luggage of their sibling, Amer, onboard a flight to Abu Dhabi on Etihad Airways, purportedly as a gift to family members. The brothers assembled the bomb in a garage, using instructions sent by a member of ISIS to an encrypted mobile phone app.

The plan was scrapped at the Sydney airport after Amer's luggage was found to be overweight and he was asked to repack it. Khaled removed the explosive item at that time. The brothers had also schemed to kill their brother with poisonous gas, although this too did not come to fruition.

Israeli authorities tipped off Australian authorities to the failed bomb plot two weeks afterward.

The Supreme Court of New South Wales in Australia found the brothers guilty of planning a terrorist attack on Tuesday. Although no one was harmed, Justice Christine Adamson, in her sentencing, stressed the mass injury that could have taken place if they had followed through. The plane Amer took had 400 people on board.

"The conspiracy plainly envisaged that a large number of people would have been killed ... no-one would have survived ... no-one would have had time to say goodbye," Adamson said. The judge also attributed the Khayats' actions as responsive to Amer's gay identity, which was "regarded as bringing shame on the family."

Amer was cleared of any wrongdoing regarding the attempted attack earlier this month. He reportedly blew a kiss to his brothers as they awaited their own sentencing. To local news outlets, he also denounced any use of violence in the name of religion.

"Terrorism, that's not good. God, he doesn't tell us to kill our people, our children," Amer told Seven News, an Australian news service. He still loves his brothers, though, "because it's blood."

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