Today was supposed to be the second day of testimony in the trial of alleged “underwear bomber” Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, but instead the 25-year-old Nigerian unexpectedly changed his plea to guilty on all counts, the Detroit Free Press reports. The defiant would-be terrorist read a statement to the court saying that he was guilty under US law, but not under Islamic law, and praising jihad as one of “the most virtuous acts” a Muslim can perform.
Abdulmutallab said he’d tried to blow up the plane to avenge innocents killed by the US in Iraq, Israel, Afghanistan, Somalia, and elsewhere, and warned the US to change its ways. “If you laugh at us now, we will laugh at you later,” he said. The judge accepted the pleas. Sentencing will take place Jan. 12. Abdulmutallab faced eight charges, including one—attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction—that carries a sentence of up to life in prison. (Read more Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab stories.)