Crime & Justice

New York bike path killer handed 10 life sentences for terror attack

New York City, May 17 (EFE).- An Islamic extremist who killed eight people with a truck on a New York City bike path in 2017 was sentenced Wednesday to 10 life sentences plus 260 years in prison, according to the United States Department of Justice.

Uzbekistan national Sayfullo Saipov, 34, used a truck to mow down more than 20 people, killing eight and injuring many more, on a bike path in lower Manhattan on the afternoon of Halloween 2017 in the deadliest terror attack in New York since 9/11.

Five tourists from Argentina, two Americans and a Belgian woman were killed.

Judge Vernon Broderick on Wednesday sentenced the ISIS-inspired terrorist to eight consecutive life sentences, two concurrent life sentences, and a consecutive sentence of 260 years in prison following the verdict reached on Mar. 3 by a jury that rejected the death penalty.

Before his sentencing, Saipov spoke for more than an hour, according to various media outlets present, and delivered a speech full of religious references and on occasion pointing a finger at the sky.

“I was here in the court during the three months trial and I saw and I heard the victims’ families and friends. Tears of those families of the victims – maybe one handkerchief hold their tears,” Saipov said through an interpreter. “But tears and the blood (of the) IsIam population (…) the courtroom would be filled up with the tears and blood of the Muslim population.”

In his sentencing, Judge Broderick cited Saipov’s lack of remorse.

“The conduct in this case is among the worst – if not the worst – I have ever seen, both in terms of the impact of that on the victims and on the sheer unrepentant nature of the defendant,” Broderick said.

“You did not and you do not care about their pain and their suffering that is the direct result of your callous and cowardly actions,” he told Saipov.

Survivors suffered amputations, serious brain injuries, life-altering physical injuries and significant psychological trauma, the justice department said.

The judge gave the floor to more than 20 survivors and loved ones of those killed in the attack, such as the Argentinian Ariel Erlij whose widow Gabriela Pereya confronted Saipov.

“Saipov, your god thinks you’re a coward because you didn’t kill yourself when you killed them,” Pereya said, according to Fox News. “And if you want to make him accept you and love you, go kill yourself.”

The five Argentinians had been part of a group of 10 friends visiting New York from Rosario to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their university graduation.

Belgian tourist Marion Van Reeth addressed Saipov from her wheelchair.

“Mister Saipov, I am one of your victims. Amputated of both legs, I will never be able to walk like you can,” she said, according to CNN. “I have a question for you. Are you still convinced that your cruel act versus innocent people was the right thing? Do you still feel yourself a soldier of ISIS and proud of your act? I really hope not.”

Prosecutors in the case had submitted a pre-sentencing document saying Saipov “is an unabashed terrorist — a proud murderer who deserves no leniency and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law.”

The eight life sentences “account for the eight lives Saipov stole when he committed his vicious ISIS attack” and the 260 years in prison “constitutes the maximum penalty for the 18 attempted murders Saipov cruelly committed, which included the attempted murders of four children,” the justice department said. EFE


Related Articles

Back to top button