DETROIT, (Reuters) – The Nigerian man accused of trying to use a bomb in his underwear to blow up a U.S. airliner on Christmas Day 2009 pleaded guilty on Wednesday to all charges against him and warned the United States could face “a great calamity.”
Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, 24, entered the guilty pleas a day after testimony began in his trial. Not-guilty pleas had previously been entered on behalf of Abdulmutallab, who was representing himself in the trial with help from an attorney.
Abdulmutallab, who is linked to al Qaeda, pleaded guilty to eight felonies, including conspiracy to commit terrorism, attempted murder and attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. He faces life in prison when sentenced Jan. 12.
Abdulmutallab told the judge he was fulfilling a “religious duty” and participating in an act of jihad against the United States. He said his planned attack was meant to avenge the deaths of “innocent Muslims” in Yemen, Afghanistan and elsewhere.
“The U.S. should be warned that if they continue to kill and support those who kill innocent Muslims, then the U.S. should await a great calamity … or God will strike them directly,” he said.