updated 4/27/2005 12:27:02 PM ET 2005-04-27T16:27:02

A federal jury on Wednesday convicted a former British clothing merchant of attempting to sell shoulder-launched missiles to what he believed was a terrorist group planning to shoot down airliners.

The sting operation involving undercover agents from several nations became the first terrorism prosecution in New Jersey after the 2001 attacks.

Hemant Lakhani was found guilty on all five counts he faced. The verdict came just hours after the jury began its second day of deliberations.

The trial began in January, but had several breaks while the 69-year-old London resident had an angioplasty for a heart condition and later had an emergency double hernia operation.

Lakhani was convicted of one count of attempting to provide material support to terrorists, which carries up to 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine; one count of unlawful brokering of foreign defense articles, which carries up to 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine; two counts of money laundering, each of which carries up to 20 years in prison and a $500,000 fine; and one count of attempting to import merchandise into the U.S. by means of false statements, which carries up to two years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

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