Moussaoui Begins Life Sentence in Supermax Prison

Associated Press
Sunday, May 14, 2006

DENVER, May 13 -- Convicted Sept. 11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui began serving his life sentence Saturday at the nation's most secure prison after U.S. marshals flew him overnight from Alexandria, Va., to Colorado.

Marshals brought Moussaoui, prisoner 51427-054, before dawn Saturday to the Supermax federal prison in southern Colorado, where he will spend 23 hours a day in his cell and have little to no contact with other notorious criminals.

"He has now begun serving his sentence of life without the possibility of release," the U.S. Marshals Service said in a statement.

On Friday, Moussaoui's court-appointed lawyers appealed his life sentence and the denial of his request for a new trial. In a one-paragraph notice of appeal, they said Moussaoui wanted the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit to review the final judgment and sentence he was given May 4 and Judge Leonie M. Brinkema's May 8 denial of his request to withdraw his guilty plea and go to trial on the original charges.

Since his sentencing, Moussaoui has said he lied when testifying at his sentencing trial that he was to hijack a fifth jetliner on Sept. 11, 2001. He has returned to claiming -- as he had for four years before the trial testimony -- that he had nothing to do with the suicide hijackings that took nearly 3,000 lives.

Moussaoui was in jail in Minnesota on immigration charges when the attacks took place. But he has admitted he was training to hijack a 747 jetliner and fly it into the White House as part of a later plot to gain release of a radical Egyptian sheik who is serving a life term for terrorist acts.

Among the inmates at the Supermax prison are Ramzi Yousef, Eric Robert Rudolph, Theodore J. Kaczynski and Terry L. Nichols. Also there is Richard C. Reid, the would-be shoe bomber.

© 2006 The Washington Post Company