Trial for Berkshire County terror suspect still months away

Ciccolo not expected in court

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – We’re still months away from the start of a trial for Berkshire County terror suspect Alex Ciccolo.
Ciccolo, also known as Ali Al Amriki, was arrested on July 4th, 2015. He faces terrorism and gun charges.

Wednesday, Ciccolo’s lawyer and U.S. Attorney’s were back in Federal Court in Springfield for a status conference.

A Magistrate Judge set some new deadlines and seemed hopeful a trial date may be set this summer.  Ciccolo’s attorney, David Hoose, must decide by June 2nd if Ciccolo will pursue a defense of insanity, public authority and/or alibi.

Ciccolo wasn’t in court on Wednesday.  Attorney Hoose mentioned at the last status conference that Ciccolo would rather not attend these conferences.

The next court date was set for June 20th either for a motion hearing or a final status conference.

If a plea deal isn’t reached, a trial is expected to last four weeks.

Ciccolo was arrested back in July of 2015 for allegedly plotting a terrorist attack on a college campus. He’s now facing a number of terrorism and weapons-related charges including:

  • Attempting to use weapons of mass destruction
  • Attempting to provide support to a foreign terrorist organization
  • Assault and battery with a dangerous weapon
  • Illegal weapons possession

If he’s found guilty, Ciccolo could face life in prison. The 24-year-old had been under FBI surveillance since September 2014 after his father told the FBI that his son wanted to go overseas to fight for ISIS.

Alexander Ciccolo

According to court documents, Ciccolo was plotting an attack on a college campus with guns and pressure cooker bombs. The day before his arrest, he allegedly bought a pressure cooker from the Walmart in North Adams.

Ciccolo has been held at a maximum-security facility in Rhode Island ever since. He was last seen in court back in November for a status conference hearing. That’s when he added Ramzi Kaseemy, an attorney and law professor, to his defense team with Attorney David Hoose.

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