A federal jury yesterday found four men guilty of placing explosives outside Bronx synagogues last year.

The four, arrested in an FBI sting operation in May 2009, were being tried in Manhattan federal court. They face the possibility of life in prison.

Defense attorneys said the men — James Cromitie, David Williams, Onta Williams and Laguerre Payen — were not guilty because they were entrapped in a plan devised by the FBI and orchestrated by a paid confidential informant.


Prosecutors said Cromitie, charged with recruiting the three others, was motivated by anti-Jewish sentiments and wanted to participate in jihad. Defense attorneys argued that he was lured into those beliefs by the government’s informant.

Of the eight charges, all four were found guilty of seven.

In addition to planting the explosives, the four intended to shoot down military planes at an Air National Guard base in Newburgh, New York, with Stinger surface-to-air missiles, prosecutors said.