World & Nation

‘American Taliban’ John Walker Lindh freed after 17 years in prison

John Walker Lindh became known as the “American Taliban” after he was captured in Afghanistan in 2001.
(Tariq Mahmood /AFP/Getty Images)

The California man who became known as the “American Taliban” after his capture on an Afghanistan battlefield in late 2001 has been released from prison.

John Walker Lindh, 38, was released Thursday from the federal prison in Terre Haute, Ind., a federal Bureau of Prisons spokesman told the Associated Press. Lindh spent more than 17 years in prison after pleading guilty to providing support to the Taliban.

The plea deal called for a 20-year sentence, but Lindh is getting out a few years early for good behavior.

His release was opposed by the family of Mike Spann, a CIA officer who was killed during an uprising of Taliban prisoners in Afghanistan shortly after interrogating Lindh.


A judge recently imposed additional restrictions on Lindh’s post-release supervision, including monitoring of his internet use.

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