Oh, right. That.
Prior to 9/11, Al Qaeda was notable for two attacks: the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombings, and the 2000 attack on the USS Cole. Their man on the ground coordinating the USS Cole attack was Jamal Ahmad Mohammad Al Badawi, a middle manager-type who rented the safe houses, gathered equipment, and surveilled the port for information on everything from shipping traffic to average refueling time to, crucially, how close small vessels were able to get to the warships. He might not have planted the bombs personally, but he handed the blueprint for the attack to the guys who did.
We know all this because he was caught. We did it! Big Willie Style, baby! He was actually sentenced to 15 years by the Yemeni government. Sadly, that sentence was reduced somewhat when a prison breakout freed him and dozens of other Al Qaeda operatives.
And that's when he disappeared? Actually, ha ha, no. A short while after escaping he handed himself in and apologized for any inconvenience that he might have caused blowing up our sailors. He even went so far as to pledge loyalty to the Yemeni president. This shameless, shallow gesture totally worked because the Yemeni justice system doesn't have any laws against Jihad, or blowing up ships, or any of the usual things laws are good for.