When most people picture convicted terrorists, they think of the likes of Omar Abdel-Rahman (the Blind Sheikh), shoe bomber Richard Reid, or Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. All were involved in high-profile terrorist attacks against the United States, and all received hefty punishment. Abdel-Rahman died in prison while serving a life sentence for plotting the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and other attacks. Richard Reid is serving a life sentence for a failed plot to destroy an airliner in flight, and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is trying to fight his death sentence for planting bombs at the 2013 Boston Marathon.
Such high-profile cases have led the public to believe that convicted terrorists no longer pose a threat to society. This is not the case. Today, most terrorism-related sentences allow convicted terrorists to return to society within a few years to a decade.