CNN BREAKING NEWS
Reid Pleads Guilty
Aired October 4, 2002 - 10:31 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Accused shoe bomber Richard Reid pleads guilty in court in Boston and later on today at about 2:30 Eastern time, Attorney General John Ashcroft will be talking about that matter.
For now, we are going to turn to our own Bill Delaney to talk some more about the details of the court proceedings today. He is in Boston -- Hi, Bill.
BILL DELANEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi. I'm in Boston, in front of the federal courthouse where just moments ago, Richard Reid did indeed plead guilty to the eight counts against him in the indictment filed against him last January. Counts carrying charges that will now assure him a minimum sentence of at least 60 years in prison, a maximum of life.
In a hushed courtroom, hulking Richard Reid in his tan-colored Department of Correction jumpsuit, shambled up to the witness stand, his hands behind his back, kind of rocking his body back and forth, his head lowered to take his place in the witness stand and then listen to Federal Judge William Young detail meticulously the charges against him from just a few feet away from Richard Reid.
Richard Reid, throughout -- with a kind of almost whimsical expression on his face, at times smiling at charges as horrific as murder and use of a weapon of mass destruction. Richard Reid answering questions posed to him mostly in monosyllables. So he did say a number of things, a number of longer statements, such as, asked by the judge, Why are you pleading guilty?
He said, "Because, at the end of the day, I know I did the actions." Asked later in this by the judge, again, why you pleading guilty?
"Because I know what I done," he said. Sounding like the former petty thief and mugger with only a fifth grade education that Richard Reid is.
He also said at one point, I don't recognize your system, so how could I be happy with it, when asked whether he was happy with the federal public defenders who represented him. He also said he was a disciple of Osama bin Laden, and an enemy of the United States.
Judge William Young setting sentencing now for January 8 -- back to you.
WHITFIELD: Now, Bill, earlier before today, it had been said that Richard Reid, wanted the information about his al Qaeda training, that it would be dropped, that information omitted from these proceedings. Even though he pleaded guilty, was that honored, or was that argument even made?
DELANEY: Yes, the argument was made right off the top by Richard Reid's attorneys, but the judge said he felt that those accusations in the indictment were relevant, and could be brought up at the time of the sentencing. But he also said that he didn't feel they should be a part of the proceedings today, so when the federal prosecutors tried to introduce that, as part of the evidence they prevented (ph), the judge asked them not to bring that up at this point.
Having said all that, however, the defendant, Richard Reid, did not get what he wanted, or what his attorneys wanted, which was to have those accusations removed altogether from the indictment.
The judge saying accusations that he had ties to al Qaeda are relevant to the charges against Richard Reid, and they will be brought up at the time of the sentencing hearing, but not today on January 8.
WHITFIELD: All right. Thanks very much, Bill Delaney from Boston.
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