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US Militant Pleads Guilty to Bombings at 1996 Olympics, Abortion Clinics


Eric Rudolph pleaded guilty in federal court on Wednesday to a series of bombings that occurred in the southern United States during the 1990s. Rudolph admitted setting off four explosions, including one during the 1996 Olympics.

Rudolph pleaded guilty to the crimes in exchange for a sentence of four consecutive life prison terms. In Birmingham, Alabama, the 38-year-old admitted setting off a bomb made of dynamite and nails at a women's health clinic in 1998. The explosion killed an off-duty police officer and severely injuring nurse Emily Lyons. Mrs. Lyons and her husband, Jeff Lyons, said Rudolph seemed proud of the crime.

"You can't forgive what he did. He planned it and he watched what he did to us that day. That is not forgivable," she said.

"And he isn't asking for forgiveness. He seems to be extremely proud of what he did. In a lot of cases some people regret what they did. I do not ever expect to see any remorse come out of that man. From what we saw today when they asked, did you cause it to detonate, he said I certainly did and he was just as proud as he could be of that," Mr. Lyons said.

Rudolph, who eluded capture for more than five years despite a massive search, also appeared in court in Atlanta, where he admitted bombing a clinic, a gay nightclub, and setting off an explosion at a late-night rock concert during the 1996 Olympic Games, killing one woman and injuring more than 100 people.

In a written statement released by his attorneys after his court appearances, Rudolph said he opposes abortions and homosexuality.

He said he planned several bombings during the Olympics, in his words, "to confound, anger and embarrass the Washington government in the eyes of the world."

After he is officially sentenced in July, Rudolph will be put in solitary confinement in a federal penitentiary.

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