Court hears appeal of Mass. man convicted of conspiring to help al-Qaida

A lawyer for a Massachusetts man convicted of conspiring to help al-Qaida has argued that numerous terror-related images used by prosecutors at his trial prejudiced the jury against him.

Tarek Mehanna was sentenced to 17 1/2 years in prison after being convicted last year.

Prosecutors say Mehanna traveled to Yemen for training in a terrorist camp and intended to go to Iraq to fight U.S. soldiers. When that failed, prosecutors say, Mehanna returned to the U.S. and disseminated materials online promoting violent jihad.

In arguments Tuesday before the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Mehanna's lawyer said prosecutors showed images of the Sept. 11 terror attacks and others during his trial to frighten jurors.

But a Justice Department lawyer said the images demonstrated that Mehanna wanted to help al-Qaida.