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US appeals court orders resentencing in NY terrorism case

A federal appeals court on Friday ordered the resentencing of a Staten Island man for his “shockingly low” prison sentence after being convicted of attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State and kill an FBI agent.

The 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan said Fareed Mumuni’s trial judge abused her discretion by sentencing Mumuni to 17 years behind bars when federal guidelines recommend 85 years, Reuters reported.

In a 2-1 decision, the appeals court ruled that U.S. District Judge Margo Brodie, an Obama appointee, improperly second-guessed whether Mumuni, 25, had intentions to kill FBI Special Agent Kevin Coughlin when he stabbed him repeatedly with an 8-inch kitchen knife in June 2015 in Mumuni’s home.

Additionally, the majority opinion said Brodie gave too much weight to Mumuni’s age, his lack of a prior criminal record and his support from family and friends.

Federal guidelines for sentencing are advisory but a judge must justify any sentencing that is considerably harsher or weaker than the government recommendations.

Sentences that fall below the guidelines aren’t uncommon, but an 80 percent reduction is above average, Reuters reported.

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