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The only American citizen to be convicted in a US jury trial of successfully joining the Islamic State overseas has been sentenced to 20 years in prison. Twenty-seven-year-old Mohamad Khweis of Alexandria, Virginia, was sentenced today in federal court in Virginia after being convicted on terrorism charges earlier this year. Khweis traveled to Islamic State-controlled territory in Iraq and Syria in December 2015, even obtaining an official membership card.
But he found life there distasteful and escaped after a few months. The 20-year sentence was halfway between the 35-year sentence sought by prosecutors and the five-year term requested the defense. Khweis' lawyers argued that a harsh sentence would deter other Americans who joined the Islamic State from quitting.
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