Lynne Stewart, the lawyer sentenced in 2006 to 28 months in prison for aiding convicted terrorist Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, got a new sentence Thursday -- 10 years -- after an appeals court ruled late last year her trial judge went too light on her.
Southern District Judge John Koeltl could've given the 70-year-old Stewart 30 years, but went easy on her considering her age and failing health.
But Koetl wasn't humored by Stewart's scoffing at her original sentencing by saying in 2006 she could do the time "standing on her head." The statement won her a standing ovation at the time.
In sentencing on Thursday, a haggard Stewart admitted she was crazy to think jail time would be easy.
"I have learned that no one, but particularly this 70-year-old woman, can do 28 months standing on their head," she reportedly said. "I was wrong."
Stewart was found guilty in February 2005 of conveying messages for Rahman from his prison cell to his terrorist network, the Islamic Group. The seven counts included material support to a conspiracy to kill and kidnap individuals in a foreign country, conspiracy to defraud the United States and making false statements.
She appealed to the New York-based Second Circuit Court of Appeals in November 2009, which affirmed the conviction but called for resentencing by saying the sentencing guidelines require enhancement for terrorism, perjury and abuse of her position of trust as a lawyer.
Rahman was sentenced for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and given extra "special administrative measures" to limit his contact with the outside world. Stewart, who defended Rahman, and two others involved in his case were charged with violating the SAMs by smuggling messages to his followers in Egypt, which resulted in the Islamic Group rescinding its support for a cease fire of terror attacks.
"Lynne Stewart broke the oath she swore as an attorney and now stands sentenced in the system of laws that she betrayed," U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said Thursday in a statement issued by the Justice Department.