August 27, 2014
OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) - A California man with delusions of joining the Taliban has been sentenced to 15 years in federal prison for trying to blow up a bank with a car bomb he thought would go off but was actually made up of inert materials supplied by the FBI.
U.S. District Judge Virginia Gonzalez Rogers said she was satisfied that the sentence - spelled out in a plea deal between Matthew Aaron Llaneza and federal prosecutors - struck a balance between acknowledging the 29-year-old San Jose resident's mental condition and punishing him for actions.
Llaneza was arrested last February near a Bank of America building in Oakland after he tried to detonate an SUV loaded with chemicals he secured with the help of an FBI agent posing as a Taliban go-between.
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