RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A federal judge is again delaying the trial of a mentally ill North Carolina man who tried to join al-Qaida-linked fighters in Syria.

U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle postponed next week's trial of Cary resident Basit Sheikh to give physicians time to fully restore his competency. Boyle ordered a four-month delay so that doctors can experiment with Sheikh's anti-psychotic medications and make sure he's fit for trial later.

Sheikh was arrested in a FBI sting as he prepared to board a 2013 flight to the Middle East. He initially refused anti-psychotic drugs to address his schizophrenia, but he was forced to take them under court order.

Prosecutors have said prosecuting and convicting Sheikh is important to deter other radicalized Americans from joining terrorist groups.