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Bin Laden Son-in-Law Convicted

Hey, remember all that Republican fury over the idea that terrorists could be tried in civilian courts and convicted without the world coming to an end and dogs and cats living together? Turns out, not so much. Osama Bin Laden’s son-in-law was convicted in civilian court in New York, just like hundreds of others have been.

THIS morning in a New York City courtroom Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, former al-Qaeda spokesperson and Osama bin Laden’s son-in-law, was found guilty of three counts: conspiring to kill Americans, conspiring to provide material support to terrorists and providing support to terrorists. The jury returned its unanimous verdict fairly quickly, on the morning of the second day of deliberation. Mr Abu Ghaith was the most prominent member of al-Qaeda to be tried in a civilian court…

Mr Abu Ghaith was arrested only a year ago. This speedy verdict followed an efficient three-week trial in a Federal civilian court. Many see this as proof that civilian courtrooms are quite good at handling terrorism trials. Compare this case with the snail-like pace of the pre-trial military-commission hearings in Guantánamo Bay, where five of the surviving architects of the 9/11 attacks are being tried. Efforts to try terrorists in military tribunals have proved embarrassing.

Sentencing for Mr Abu Ghaith will take place on September 8th. Many suspect he will receive life in prison. Some speculate he will be sent to a super-max high-security prison in Colorado, where Richard Reid (the shoe bomber), Zacarias Moussaoui (a 9/11 conspirator) and a host of other al-Qaeda operatives reside.

Wait, you mean we can bring terrorists to justice without shredding the constitution? You mean Republicans throwing a fit about it were just being demagogues stirring up unjustified fear for political gain? How entirely unsurprising both of those things are.

Comments

  1. says

    Well, sure, we got away with it this time*. It’s safer just to keep the rest in Gitmo, where I’m assured they only have the Worst of the Worst.

     
    * He could have gotten off.

  2. says

    Wait, you mean we can bring terrorists to justice without shredding the constitution? You mean Republicans throwing a fit about it were just being demagogues stirring up unjustified fear for political gain? How entirely unsurprising both of those things are.

    Monday – the sounds of silence, because the republicans have no answer for it

    Tuesday – “Obama prevented us from talking about the trial!”

  3. Pierce R. Butler says

    Modusoperandi @ # 1: He could have gotten off.

    In a certain sense of that phrase, he very likely did, 12.5 years ago.

    IANAL, but I suspect that just from the routine defense attorney point of view, a jury trial about 9/11 in NYC would entail lots of prejudicial-bias issues. Assuming a change-of-venue motion was introduced, the apparent prompt rejection of same speaks to the “efficiency” of this trial involving a predetermined conclusion.

    But we have at least the consolation that the whole business really pissed off Lindsey Graham.

  4. sigurd jorsalfar says

    This just highlights the fact that Gitmo isn’t for the ‘worst of the worst’. It’s for people against whom there isn’t enough evidence. In the olden days those people were called ‘innocent’.

  5. atheistblog says

    What was Laden’s son in law’s crime to spend his rest of life in jail ?
    Was he planned anything, involved in executing anything, financed anything, spend rest of the life for speech ?
    Meanwhile, wall street cronies are too big to jail, torturers has full protections, whistleblower’s are put into jail.
    One thing is sure in this world, justice is who has the power and strength, only winners writes the history.
    There is nothing objective about anything.
    Particularly in US, never care about anything, justice, fairness, just find a way to make money, you will be alright in your life.

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