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Category Archives: Terrorism Trials & Investigations

Terrorism Trials

Defense Counsel: 9/11 Case Halted, Pending Change in Judges’ Assignment Rule

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015 at 3:14 PM

Wow.  This just in from J. Connell III, an attorney for 9/11 defendant Ammar al-Baluchi: WASHINGTON, DC-Today, a military commissions judge ordered a halt to the 9/11 case at Guantanamo Bay because Department of Defense officials tried to unlawfully influence the military commissions judiciary.  The order, known as “abatement,” means that no further proceedings will . . .
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Chief Prosecutor Statement on This Week’s Hearing in the al Nashiri Case

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Monday, February 23, 2015 at 11:00 AM

Per our usual practice, Lawfare will be posting digests of the Al Nashiri military commission proceedings—which resume today at noon—throughout the week. First up is the statement by Brig. Gen. Mark Martins, which you can find below:

Oral Argument Recap: Tsarnaev Mandamus Litigation

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Friday, February 20, 2015 at 3:30 PM

For roughly 60 minutes yesterday morning, a three-judge panel of the First Circuit heard arguments as to whether Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s death penalty trial should be moved out of Boston due to concerns that he would not be able to receive a fair and impartial trial. (Yishai recently covered the legal backdrop here; briefing can be . . .
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CMCR Voids David Hicks’ Guilty Plea and Sentence

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015 at 2:23 PM

The Miami Herald (via the AP’s Ben Fox) has a piece on the Court of Military Commission Review’s (CMCR) ruling; Jess Bravin also has this report in the Wall Street Journal.  The decision can be found here, and opens as follows: SILLIMAN, DEPUTY CHIEF JUDGE: Appellant urges us to set aside his guilty plea to providing material support to terrorism, in violation . . .
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Thursday at the Military Commissions: The 9/11 Case

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Monday, February 16, 2015 at 8:00 AM

After the ups and downs of this week’s hearings in the military commissions case of United States v. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed et al., Thursday provided a much more straightforward series of motions brought on behalf of one accused 9/11 plotter only, Mustafa Al-Hawsawi. I overview some of Thursday’s highlights, including courtroom discussion Hawsawi’s motions, below. Hawsawi’s Learned . . .
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Yesterday at the Military Commissions: the 9/11 Case

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Thursday, February 12, 2015 at 2:28 PM

As readers likely know, earlier this week, pre-trial motions in Khalid Sheikh Mohammed et al. hit an unanticipated obstacle when one accused, Ramzi Binalshibh, indicated that he recognized one of his translators from a past role as an interpreter at a CIA black-site. Given the recent uproar over the revelation that the FBI had been questioning . . .
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Pretrial Proceedings in the 9/11 Case Resume Today

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 9:15 AM

Alas, Lawfare won’t be live-blogging the session, which presumably will reveal a bit more about what one accused, Ramzi Binalshibh, told the judge on Monday: that the detainee recognized one of his translators, who, as Binalshibh recalled, had worked at a CIA blacksite where Binalshibh had been held. This put the hearing on pause for a day; . . .
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On Judge O’Toole’s Stubborn Reluctance To Moving the Boston Bomber Trial

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Tuesday, February 10, 2015 at 4:00 PM

Jury selection in the trial of  accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has dragged on for over a month. Since January 5, over 150 potential jurors have been questioned, and still the judge proceeds haltingly through a pool filled with preconceptions about Tsarnaev’s guilt and fury at what the bombing’s perpetrators. But despite these challenges, . . .
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Argument Recap: The Critical Difference in How al-Nashiri Loses

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Tuesday, February 10, 2015 at 2:03 PM

If one thing was clear from Tuesday morning’s 61-minute argument before the D.C. Circuit in In re al-Nashiri, in which a Guantánamo military commission defendant seeks to challenge on constitutional grounds the composition of the intermediate Court of Military Commission Review (CMCR) assigned to hear the government’s interlocutory appeal in his case (which I previewed here), it was that . . .
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2/9 Session #2: The Translator, Part Two

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Monday, February 9, 2015 at 10:59 AM

Our session is once more called to order.  The defense and accused are here, but now the Special Review Team is not—its place having been taken by the ordinary prosecution team.  (The two groups, you’ll recall, maintain strict independence from one another, given the conflict allegations arising from the FBI’s approach to a member of . . .
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9/11 Case Motions Hearing: February 9 Session

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Monday, February 9, 2015 at 8:50 AM

Your correspondent returns to Fort Meade’s Smallwood Hall—venue for closed circuit TV monitoring of courtroom proceedings down at Guantanamo.  At the base in Cuba, the military commission case against the five alleged plotters of the 9/11 attacks will resume this morning at 9 a.m. We will follow along, and post dispatches throughout the day in . . .
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Chief Prosecutor Statement on This Week’s Hearing in the 9/11 Case

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Sunday, February 8, 2015 at 10:00 PM

Here y’are.  Brig. Gen. Mark Martins’ remarks begin as follows: Good afternoon. On this day in 1949, the bill that ultimately became the Uniform Code of Military Justice was introduced into both houses of Congress, and on the same day two years later, the President prescribed the Manual for Courts-Martial. Creating uniformity of procedures across . . .
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The Meaningful Legal Differences Between Stateside and Guantánamo Detention

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Thursday, February 5, 2015 at 3:30 PM

Gabor’s post from this morning, which is styled as a response to Ben’s thoughtful analysis of what it will take to close Guantánamo (while ignoring some of the other responses), concludes that the only meaningful way to “close” Guantánamo is for President Obama “to either release all detainees or try them in our time-tested federal courts,” at least largely . . .
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al-Nashiri Argument Preview: The CMCR’s Appointments Clause Problem

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Tuesday, February 3, 2015 at 8:17 AM

Next Tuesday, a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit (Henderson, Rogers, & Pillard, JJ.) is set to hear oral argument in In re al-Nashiri, the latest in a long-line of pre-trial disputes arising out of the Guantánamo military commission proceedings against Abd Al-Rahim Hussein Muhammed al-Nashiri, who is accused of involvement in two terrorist attacks . . .
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Chief Prosecutor Statement on the Conclusion of This Week’s Al-Hadi Hearings

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Saturday, January 31, 2015 at 8:55 AM

You’ll find it here. Thursday’s remarks by Chief Prosecutor Brig. Gen. Mark Martins open: Good afternoon. This week, the Military Commission convened to try the charges against Abd al Hadi al-Iraqi held its fourth series of pre-trial sessions without panel members present since he was arraigned. The charges against Abd al Hadi are only allegations. . . .
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Wednesday and Thursday at the Military Commissions: Al Hadi

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Thursday, January 29, 2015 at 10:15 PM

Editor’s Note: This post represents a modest adjustment in Lawfare‘s military commissions coverage, one made necessary in part because of the surge in criminal hearings at Guantanamo in the coming weeks and months. For a full explanation, please see the first post in this series. Wednesday The second day of the week-long hearing in United States v. . . .
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Yesterday at the Military Commissions: Al-Hadi

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Tuesday, January 27, 2015 at 7:55 PM

Editor’s Note: This post represents a modest adjustment in Lawfare‘s military commissions coverage, one made necessary in part because of the surge in criminal hearings at Guantanamo in the coming weeks and months. Previously, when Lawfare writers have been unable to live-blog Guantanamo proceedings by visiting a CCTV observation facility at Fort Meade, they have turned . . .
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Chief Prosecutor Statement on Opening of This Week’s Al-Hadi Hearing

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Monday, January 26, 2015 at 9:27 AM

Here it is.  Last night’s statement from Brigadier General Mark Martins opens: Good evening. This week the Military Commission convened to try the charges against Abd al Hadi al-Iraqi will hold its third series of sessions without panel members present since he was arraigned on 18 June 2014. On that date, Abd al Hadi was . . .
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Al-Hadi Case: January 25 Session

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Monday, January 26, 2015 at 9:18 AM

Today marks the first in a week-long hearing in the military commission case of United States v. Abd al Hadi al-Iraqi.  But unfortunately this week, Lawfare won’t be able to view—and blog about—the Guantanamo proceedings in nearly-live fashion, from a CCTV facility in Fort Meade, Maryland. Accordingly, as per our usual “backup” practice, we will review transcripts of each . . .
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Thoughts on the Al-Marri Release

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Thursday, January 22, 2015 at 10:28 AM

In October 2009, Ali Saleh Al-Marri was sentenced to more than eight years in prison under a plea deal the Al Qaeda sleeper agent had struck with federal prosecutors. Quietly, on January 16, Al-Marri was released—having served just over five years of his time. Reports the Washington Post: Ali Saleh Mohammad Kahlah al-Marri, 49, was released from a maximum . . .
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