A court in Norway has convicted two men of terror charges after finding them guilty of involvement in an al-Qaeda plot to bomb a Danish newspaper that published cartoons of (the muslim) Prophet Muhammad (sux) in 2005.
The Oslo District Court on Monday sentenced the mastermind of the plot, Michael Davud, a Norwegian citizen of Chinese-Uighur origin, to seven years in prison for planning the "attack together with al-Qaeda."
The court also handed down a three-and-half-year prison term to Shawan Sadek Saeed Bujak, an Iraqi Kurd with a Norwegian residency permit, for his role in the terror plot. Bujak had earlier confessed to plotting the attack on the Danish daily with the co-defendants.
However, the third defendant in the case, namely David Jakobsen, was cleared of terror charges, but sentenced to four months in prison for helping the other two defendants to acquire explosive materials. He had earlier cooperated with the police during the investigation.
Despite his sentencing, Jacobson, an Uzbek with a legal residence permit in Norway, was freed on Monday itself after the court took into account the time he had already spent in prison.
All the three were accused of plotting to attack Danish daily 'Jyllands-Posten' for publishing caricatures about the Prophet. The trio were in protective custody in Norway since their arrest on July 8, 2010.
Jyllands-Posten, based in the Danish city of Aarhus, had stirred up an international controversy in 2005 after it published 12 cartoons about Prophet Muhammad. It had evoked violent protests from Muslims all over the world, as Islam prohibits depiction of the Prophet in any form over fears that it could lead to idolatry.