British shoe-bomb plotter: Parents led him to quit

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In this undated Photo provided by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, defendant Suliman Abu Ghayth, right, is seated with al-Qaida founder Osama Bin Laden, center, and Bin Laden’s deputy, Ayman al Zawahiri, in Afghanistan. Suliman Abu Ghayth, is being tried in New York, charged with plotting to kill Americans by being a motivational speaker at al-Qaida training camps before the Sept. 11 attacks and as a spokesman for the terror group afterward when it sought to recruit more militants to its cause. (AP Photo/US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York)

In this undated Photo provided by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, defendant Suliman Abu Ghayth, right, is seated with al-Qaida founder Osama Bin Laden, center, and Bin Laden’s deputy, Ayman al Zawahiri, in Afghanistan. Suliman Abu Ghayth, is being tried in New York, charged with plotting to kill Americans by being a motivational speaker at al-Qaida training camps before the Sept. 11 attacks and as a spokesman for the terror group afterward when it sought to recruit more militants to its cause. (AP Photo/US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York)

In this undated Photo taken from video and provided by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, defendant Suliman Abu Ghayth, sits on the ground somewhere in Afghanistan. Abu Ghayth, is being tried in New York for plotting to kill Americans by being a motivational speaker at al-Qaida training camps before the Sept. 11 attacks and for serving as a spokesman for the terror group afterward. This photo was among the trial exhibits that the federal prosecutor showed the jury, sometimes repeatedly. (AP Photo/US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York)

In this undated photo provided by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, defendant Suliman Abu Ghayth, left, joins al-Qaida founder Osama Bin Laden, center, and an unidentified man somewhere in Afghanistan. Abu Ghayth, Osama Bin Laden’s son-in-law, is being tried in New York for his role as a recruiter and motivational speaker for the terror group. (AP Photo/US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York)

In this undated Photo provided by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York, defendant Suliman Abu Ghayth, left, gestures toward al-Qaida founder Osama Bin Laden, in a room somewhere in Afghanistan. Abu Ghayth, Bin Laden’s son-in-law, is being tried in New York for plotting to kill Americans by being a motivational speaker at al-Qaida training camps before the Sept. 11 attacks. He was also a spokesman for the terror group after Sept. 11, 2001, when it sought to recruit more militants to its cause. (AP Photo/US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York)

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NEW YORK (AP) — A British man said Tuesday he backed out of an airplane shoe-bomb plot in 2001 after his parents said they wouldn’t want a terrorist for a son, but not before successfully boarding and flying on planes over Europe with explosives.

Saajid Badat testified for a second day at the New York City trial of Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, Osama bin Laden’s son-in-law and al-Qaida’s spokesman after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

He revealed he wore a shoe bomb on at least one flight from Pakistan to Holland and another to Great Britain in December 2001, choosing not to detonate it because he was saving it for an attack against an American aircraft, preferably over America.

Prosecutors are using the 34-year-old Badat’s testimony to show Abu Ghaith played a pivotal role with al-Qaida when he warned Americans “the storm of aircrafts will not stop” on videotapes widely distributed after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Badat said his eagerness to carry out a suicide mission following more than three years with al-Qaida operatives in Afghanistan wilted when he visited his parents in Gloucester, England, in December 2001 and they asked what he’d done in Afghanistan.

“You’d better not be one of those sleepers,” Badat said his father told him.

His mother warned that she “wouldn’t want my son to be one of those sleepers,” he recalled.

“It was then I decided to back out of the mission,” Badat said in testimony from London shown on video screens in a Manhattan courtroom.

Abu Ghaith could face life in prison if he is convicted of conspiring to kill Americans and providing material support to al-Qaida. He is the highest-ranking al-Qaida figure to face trial on U.S. soil since 9/11.

Badat, wearing a gray suit with a narrow black tie, sat across from Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicholas Lewin and defense attorney Stanley Cohen as he recalled being asked in late September or October 2001 whether he’d be willing to carry out a suicide attack.

He said bin Laden met with him soon afterward, telling him that the American economy was like a chain.

“If you break one link, you’ll bring down the American economy,” Badat said bin Laden told him. He said al-Qaida’s leader also described sections of the Koran to read if he got scared.

Badat, who was sometimes called “sheik” because he had memorized the Koran by age 12, said he saw bin Laden between 30 and 50 times in al-Qaida training camps, including once when he gave awards to one of his sons and to a man who was one of the Sept. 11 hijackers.

Badat said he gave one of his shoe bombs in early December 2001 to some Malaysian men who wanted to blow open a plane’s cockpit door and carry out a Sept. 11-style hijacking of their own. Afterward, he flew from Pakistan to Holland and then on another flight to Great Britain.

“I was wearing the shoe,” he said, referring to the shoe bomb.

Badat, who said he cannot testify in person in the United States because he would be arrested on terrorism charges in Boston,

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