US District Judge Joan Lenard found that Burson Augustin, 23, played a minor role in the conspiracy and gave him a far lighter sentence than the 30 years that prosecutors had been seeking.
In handing down the sentence, Lenard said: "Islamic terrorism is one of the most tremendous problems that this country now confronts... this defendant took an oath to Al-Qaeda."
But she added that Augustin's actions might have been affected by other factors. "This was a young man who for whatever reason, perhaps lack of education or lack of direction, came under the influence of Narseal Batiste."
Augustin's attorney Louis Casuso, had asked for leniency, telling the court that "when you are young, you say a lot of stupid things and you go through a lot of stupid things."