Friday, March 08, 2013

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith Indictment Should Be Dismissed

Bin Laden's brother-in-law has been indicted and is being held on the charge of conspiring to kill Americans. Having reviewed the indictment, it should be dismissed. Why? The caption of the indictment first:
 

"Conspiracy to Kill US Nationals" - Got that?
Next, the important part of the indictment is where it describes his "Overt Acts":


Let's get this straight:
1. In May 2001, he "urged" people to swear allegiance to Bin Laden.
2. He told Bin Laden he would "assist" him.
3. AFTER 9/11 Bin Laden summoned him for assistance.
4. AFTER 9/11, he gave two speeches and said mean and nasty things about the US.

#1 is vague. Were the urged people involved in the 9/11 attacks? Did he know that Bin Laden was planning to kill Americans? It ain't in there.

#2 cannot be a crime. He said he would assist. Did he actually assist Bin Laden? Did this assistance involve killing Americans? Or is this about the speeches he gave AFTER the Americans (and others) were killed?

#3 cannot be a crime. Bin Laden summoned him - that's Bin Laden's action, not Abu Ghaith's.

#4 cannot be a crime. He made speeches. That's it?

To be clear, I think Abu Ghaith is evil. He preaches hatred against Jews, and I'm in the tribe. But this indictment doesn't make out anything remotely close to a crime. Judge Kaplan should dismiss it and order the Feds to return Abu Ghaith to the authorities in Jordan, Turkey or Kuwait - Abu Ghaith's choice. For another take on the indictment, see LawFare.
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