Greek High Court Reduces Prison Time of Arab Who Placed Fatal Plane Bomb

Greece’s High Court of Appeals has reduced by three years the prison sentence of Mohammed Rashid, the Palestinian terrorist convicted of bombing a Pan American airliner in August 1982 over Honolulu in which a 15-year-old Japanese boy was killed.

Rashid was convicted during his first trial and sentenced to 18 years’ imprisonment for placing a bomb aboard the plane, which was flying from Tokyo to Honolulu.

The bomb tore a hole in part of the plane but was able to land.

The court reduced the sentence by three years, citing Rashid’s good behavior in prison, and also ruled that he be expelled for life from Greece after he serves his sentence.

Apparently displeased by the court decision, Rashid swore at the court and the Greek justice system in general.

Rashid was arrested on May 30, 1988 by Greek authorities after being fingered by the FBI on charges of trying to enter Greece on a false passport.

Although the United States requested his extradition, Greece tried him instead, invoking the 1972 Montreal Convention that allows a terrorist to be tried in the country of his arrest and not necessarily in the country where the crime was committed.

Greece took that course after being warned by Palestinian groups that they would hit Greek targets should Rashid be extradited to the United States.

Ever since his arrest and throughout both his trials, Rashid said his real identity was Mohamed Hamdan and, like all Palestinian terrorists caught in Greece during the last 12 years, said he was being “framed by the CIA and the Mossad for being a Palestinian freedom-fighter.”

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