Defense seeks light sentence in Virginia terror support case
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Defense lawyers are asking a judge to go easy on a Virginia woman who pleaded guilty to lying to federal investigators about supporting the Islamic State militant group.
Heather Elizabeth Coffman’s attorneys filed papers Monday recommending a sentence of three years and 10 months, which is the low end of a guideline range that extends up to four years and nine months. The 30-year-old Coffman will be sentenced in U.S. District Court in Richmond on May 11.
Prosecutors say Coffman promoted the extremist organization on Facebook and offered to use her contacts to help an undercover FBI agent and his fictitious friend travel to Syria to join the group.
In their sentencing memo, Coffman’s attorneys describe her as a gullible loner who got caught up in a radical cause without fully understanding the implications.