In June, Aldaswari was convicted of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.
"Today he was sentenced to life in prison, justice was served and United States citizens are safe from Khalid Aldawsari," said Jeffery Haag with the U.S. District Attorney's Office, and lead prosecutor in the case.
Aldaswari came into the courtroom about 8:50 a.m. Tuesday, dressed in a blue Lubbock County Jail uniform. His hair was longer, he had a beard and appeared skinnier than before.
"It was striking that the judge said this was one of his hardest cases that he had had in his career, and it was clear that he had given this a lot of thought," said Victoria Sutton, a Texas Tech Law Professor in the courtroom.
Judge Walter took his time, pausing numerous times as he came to his decision. When Aldawsari stood with his attorney before receiving his sentence, Judge Walter asked Aldawsari what changed in him after his move to Lubbock from Vanderbilt, where he previously studied.
Aldawsari and his attorney said Aldawsari had been well adapted at Vanderbilt, something he felt he lacked once he came to Texas.
"I think the judge really struggled with giving Khalid less than a life sentence but he believed that sentence was appropriate," said Dan Cogdell, the lead Defense Attorney. "I think he wanted Khalid to say something that Khalid was incapable of saying"
When giving the chance to speak, Aldawsari spoke quietly, but apologized numerous times for his actions, and told Judge Walter he felt isolated and alone.
After the hearing, the Defense Attorney, who had been pushing for a lesser sentence, expressed their disappointment in the day's result. "Disappointed in the sentence, obviously," said Cogdell.
Judge Walter said for him, the bottom line was that he felt Aldawsari would have gone through with his plan to create a bomb and detonate it, had he received the last chemical he needed.
"Today's sentencing proves that individuals who choose to disregard the laws of our country, that the FBI, working with our law enforcement partners, will work steadfastly to make sure that our nation remains safe," said Kevin Kolbye, Assistant Special Agent in charge, FBI Dallas Division.
Cogdell said that Aldawsari has plans to appeal his sentence.