Texas Synagogue Seige: What To Know As FBI Identifies Malik Faisal Akram As Hostage-Taker Pixabay

The U.S. Department of Justice said that a 33-year-old who sold a gun to a man who used it to hold four hostages inside a Texas synagogue was sentenced Monday to nearly eight years in jail.

Henry “Michael” Dwight Williams was given the jail sentence for a federal gun crime, reported the AP News. Chief U.S. District Judge David Godbey was the one who sentenced Williams to 95 months in prison.

In June, Williams, who was previously convicted of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and attempted possession of a controlled substance, pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm.

He sold the weapon to Malik Faisal Akram, who used it on Jan. 15 after he entered Congregation Beth Israel in the Dallas-area suburb of Colleyville. According to prosecutors, he held the synagogue’s rabbi and three others hostage back then on Jan. 13, Williams sold a semi-automatic pistol to Akram, a 44-year-old British citizen. In plea papers, Williams admitted to possession of that weapon despite his prior conviction, said prosecutors.

U.S. Attorney Chad Meacham said that the defendant, who is a convicted felon, "had no business carrying, much less buying and selling firearms."

Williams confirmed selling the handgun to the hostage-taker at a Dallas intersection, said prosecutors.

Akram held hostages and demanded the release of federal prisoner Aafia Siddiqui. She is a Pakistani neuroscientist who is serving an 86-year jail sentence. She is in prison for assault and attempted murder of a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan.

The standoff in January came to an end after more than 10 hours. At the time, the temple’s rabbi threw a chair at Akram and escaped with the other two remaining hostages. Just then a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) tactical team moved in. None of the hostages were injured, but Akram was fatally shot by an FBI team.

He likely targeted the synagogue as it is close to the Federal Medical Center at Carswell in Fort Worth where Siddiqui is being held.

The Dallas Morning News reported that investigators tied Williams and Akram together by analyzing the deceased gunman’s phone records, officials revealed. Williams was taken to police custody just over a week after the standoff, according to ABC News.

Representation image. Pixabay.

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