A former Orthodox Jewish man from New Jersey was sentenced to two and a half years in prison Friday for posting violent and threatening posts on his Islamic group’s Web site intended to incite violence against those who he believed were offensive to his Islamic beliefs.
As reported by the Washington Post, Yousef al-Khattab, 45, was sentenced in federal court in Alexandria and renounced his posts on Revolution Muslim’s site, calling himself a “clown” and the “Gilbert Gottfried of the Muslims.” Al-Khattab said he did not intend to incite violence through his posts, but Judge Liam O’Grady didn’t believe that al-Khattab’s posts were intended only start a discussion.
Al-Khattab was born Joseph Leonard Cohen and was raised in New Jersey and Brooklyn in an Orthodox Jewish home.
According to court records, in 2009, al-Khattab posted a picture of the Chabad Jewish headquarters in Brooklyn, along with a link to a map showing readers who to get there, and said that the main temple was usually full of people during prayer time. Later that year another post told readers to target leaders of U.S. Jewish organizations and “deal with them directly in their homes.”
Khattab had previously pled guilty to using the Internet to put another in fear of death or injury.
Prosecutors also brought up the connection authorities discovered between al-Khattab’s organization other terrorists, including Colleen LaRose, aka Jihad Jane, and Samir Khan, who allegedly founded the al-Qaeda magazine “Inspire.”
Al-Khattab declined to comment after the hearing.