(JTA) — A man charged with planning to blow up synagogues in New York City pleaded guilty to the state charges against him.
Ahmed Ferhani, 27, an Algerian immigrant living in New York, entered the plea Tuesday in New York State Supreme Court. It is the first conviction under a state terror statute that went into effect following the 9/11 attacks.
Ferhani likely will be sentenced to 10 years in prison and face deportation after serving his term.
“By targeting a synagogue, which I knew to be a Jewish house of worship, in this manner I intended to create chaos and send a message of intimidation and coercion to the Jewish population of New York City, warning them to stop mistreating Muslims,” Ferhani told the judge during his plea, Reuters reported.
Ferhani and his accomplice, who did not appear in court on Wednesday, were arrested after they bought three firearms and what they believed was a live grenade from an undercover police detective. They reportedly had planned to disguise themselves as Chasidic Jews in order to get into the synagogues.