Author Topic: Court: Ashcroft may be sued in 9/11 case  (Read 1109 times)

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Offline Dustbunny

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Court: Ashcroft may be sued in 9/11 case
« on: September 05, 2009, 09:08:12 am »

updated 12:17 a.m. ET Sept. 5, 2009

BOISE, Idaho - A federal appeals court delivered a stinging rebuke Friday to the Bush administration’s post-Sept. 11 detention policies, ruling that former Attorney General John Ashcroft can be held liable for people who were wrongfully detained as material witnesses after 9/11.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the government’s improper use of material witnesses after Sept. 11 was “repugnant to the Constitution and a painful reminder of some of the most ignominious chapters of our national history.”

The court found that a man who was detained as a witness in a federal terrorism case can sue Ashcroft for allegedly violating his constitutional rights. Abdullah al-Kidd, a U.S. citizen and former University of Idaho student, filed the lawsuit against Ashcroft and other officials in 2005, claiming his civil rights were violated when he was detained as a material witness for two weeks in 2003.

Al-Kidd was held for two weeks
The ruling was the latest legal development in a saga dating back to 2003, when al-Kidd was standing in the Dulles International Airport and surrounded by federal agents as he prepared to study in Saudi Arabia on a scholarship.

The Kansas-born husband and father of two was held for two weeks before being extradited to Idaho and released to the custody of his wife by a federal court judge. The government thought al-Kidd had crucial testimony in a computer terrorism case against fellow Idaho student Sami Omar Al-Hussayen.

Al-Kidd and Al-Hussayen both worked on behalf of the Islamic Assembly of North America, a Michigan-based charitable organization that federal investigators alleged funneled money to activities supporting terrorism and published material advocating suicide attacks on the United States.
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