Najibullah Zazi to be sentenced

Man behind a NYC subway terror plot may receive a lenient sentence after spending nearly a decade providing "extraordinary cooperation" to authorities.
3:30 | 05/02/19

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Transcript for Najibullah Zazi to be sentenced
Two New York now. Were federal judge today will sentence and al-Qaeda inspired American. Who plotted to bomb the New York City subways during rush hour back in 2009 his name is Najibullah zazi. He pleaded guilty in 2010 you see in there Erika turner skier investigative reporter and ABC Newsradio anchors from covering the case forcing new Yorker great to see you. So we understand that his eyes he's been cooperating with that with the feds for almost a decade. Almost a decade's worth of cooperation and it's really extraordinary because this is someone. Who organized the plot that the attorney general at the time Eric Holder called the most serious terrorist threat the United States and faced. Since 9/11. But he decided to cooperate and over the last decade. He has given what federal prosecutors have described as extraordinary cooperation. And a real insight into how al-Qaeda works if not Ford not to bulldoze Ozzie. The US may not fully understand al-Qaeda is training its methods. Its recruitment how Americans travel and then link up with al-Qaeda. There was no way for for federal prosecutors to really overstate the nature of his cooperation almost like the Sammy the bull gravano of the Gambino thing. And I imagine that lengthy and extensive cooperation we'll have some bearing on the sentence that he's gonna get today from federal judge and and federal prosecutors have said they is that he deserves a rather lenient sentence he does face life in prison. The plot that he had hatched involve homemade explosives that he cooked up in a hotel room in Aurora Colorado. Made out of beauty products he drove them cross country came across the George Washington Bridge fully intend prosecutors said. Of detonating these explosives on the subway with two friends and it was only law enforcement that interrupted the attack. But. Facing life in prison and and then cooperating now to the extent that he has DeVon he faces. Far less time if in fact it's possible. Maybe not likely but possible that he walks out of prison today with time served. While that's incredible so we could see the the thwarted New York City Subway bought bomber walking the streets of New York again Aaron do we have any sense from our prosecutors about what they. Would prefer here do they want to set an example by zazi do they have any sense of his state of mind if you were released. Did you do would you still be a threat. And that's the concern. Is he fully rehabilitated from the kinds of of thoughts that led him down the terrorists path first starting at about 2006. Before he traveled to Pakistan to secure his allegiance to al-Qaeda. And that's really an open question and won the judges going to have to deeply consider. And prosecutors I think are of two minds on one hand. They they know that he did represent a serious threat to New York in the United States wanted to to detonate his explosives off on a crowded subway. On the other hand they want to be able to show an example that cooperation. Does lead to a desired result and ends aussies case perhaps all a lesser sentence. And federal prosecutors though they didn't recommend a number went on of their way in their sentencing memorandum filed with the court. To say that his cooperation had been extraordinary. That they had interviewed him. More than a hundred times that he is testimony led to the conviction of other terrorists and then there was no question he refused to answer. How fascinating case will be watching closely this afternoon when he appears. In federal court New York see your interest your senior investigative reporter Aaron thanks so much for that.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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