A Canadian terrorist who briefly became an informant against top Al Qaeda leaders was sentenced to life in prison Friday for plotting to blow up American embassies in Singapore and the Philippines.

A federal judge in Manhattan imposed the sentence after listening to a 20-minute speech from admitted terrorist Mohammed Mansour Jabarah, in which he repudiated violence and asked to be allowed to go home to his family.

Jabarah has been in U.S. custody since 2002, when he secretly pleaded guilty to the terrorism charges as part of a short-lived plea bargain.

His work as an informant ended after just a few months, when FBI agents searching his quarters discovered jihadist writings, instructions on how to make explosives and a list of U.S. agents and prosecutors that investigators believed he intended to murder.

Before his capture in Oman, several months after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Jabarah attended terrorist training camps in Afghanistan and traveled to Manila and Singapore to plan bombings of American and Israeli embassies.