Attorneys plead guilty for Molotov cocktail attack on police car in May 2020, will likely receive two years or less in prison.
By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News
Two New York City attorneys who threw a Molotov cocktail inside a police car in May 2020 pleaded guilty to a number of charges in federal court last week, likely in exchange for more lenient prison sentences.
According to a Reuters report, Urooj Rahman, 33, and Colinford Mattis, 34, pleaded guilty to charges including possessing a destructive device last October, but they refused to accept responsibility on terrorism charges — which would likely see their prison terms significantly increased to up to 10 years.
Both attorneys pleaded guilty to amended charges of conspiracy to commit arson and possession of an explosive, which excluded the terrorism enhancement, last Friday.
Prosecutors recommended that the pair serve between 18 and 24 months in prison, a dramatic reduction from the 40 year sentence that they might have received without a plea deal.
They will also pay $30,137 in restitution to New York City.
Judge Brian Cogan warned Rahman and Mattis that he is not obligated to abide by the prosecutor’s recommendation for the length of their sentences.
“If you don’t like the sentence, you won’t be able to withdraw your guilty plea,” Cogan said. “Bottom line … you’re not going to know with any certainty what the sentencing will be.”
Cogan will officially sentence the pair in October.
During rioting after the murder of George Floyd in May 2020, Rahman threw a Molotov cocktail through the window of an unoccupied police car. Mattis served as her getaway driver.
Before their arrests, Rahman was a tenants’ rights attorney at Bronx Legal Service. Princeton-educated Mattis was an associate at prominent law firm Pryor Cashman. Both will lose their law licenses as a result of their convictions.
Patrick J. Lynch, president of the New York City Police Benevolent Association, warned that the short sentences set a negative precedent.
“There is absolutely no justification for lowballing the sentence for an anti-police terrorist attack,” Lynch told Fox News.
“It’s bad enough that these dangerous criminals have been allowed to sit at home for the past two years. Handing them a below-guidelines sentence would give a green light to other anti-police radicals who seek to advance their cause through violence.”