News / USA

Al-Qaida Suspect Al-Libi Pleads Not Guilty in NY Court

FILE - This file image from the FBI website shows Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaida leader connected to the 1998 embassy bombings in eastern Africa and wanted by the United States for more than a decade.FILE - This file image from the FBI website shows Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaida leader connected to the 1998 embassy bombings in eastern Africa and wanted by the United States for more than a decade.
x
FILE - This file image from the FBI website shows Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaida leader connected to the 1998 embassy bombings in eastern Africa and wanted by the United States for more than a decade.
FILE - This file image from the FBI website shows Anas al-Libi, an al-Qaida leader connected to the 1998 embassy bombings in eastern Africa and wanted by the United States for more than a decade.
Carolyn Weaver
Libyan Al-Qaida suspect Abu Anas al-Libi pleaded not guilty in a New York court on charges linking him to the bombings of two U.S. embassies in East Africa in 1998. 

Al-Libi was snatched off a street in Tripoli by American special forces October 5, and interrogated on an U.S. Navy ship before he was brought to New York a few days ago.
 
Al-Libi, whose real name is Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, has long been under federal indictment for allegedly planning the deadly 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. He also is charged with conspiring with Osama bin Laden to attack U.S. forces in Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Somalia.
 
Shuffling into a heavily guarded courtroom, the gray-bearded al-Libi appeared weak and looked older than his 49 years. Through an Arabic interpreter he entered a plea of “not guilty” and requested a court-appointed public defender because he cannot afford a private attorney.
 
News reports say al-Libi is suffering from hepatitis, and that his condition worsened aboard the ship when he stopped eating. The judge signed a medical order at the request of attorneys, but no details were released.
 
New York criminal lawyer Ron Kuby, who has defended other terror suspects, noted the government has successfully tried five defendants accused in the embassy bombings.
 
“So the government’s path to conviction is smooth and clear and well-traveled, assuming they have evidence against al-Libi that’s comparable to the evidence against others,” said Kuby.
 
But Kuby said the weeklong interrogation of al-Libi aboard the warship could damage the case - because of rules requiring that someone arrested on a federal criminal indictment be brought before a judge without delay.
 
“The reason is the American observation of regimes where people are simply arrested and held incommunicado for protracted periods of time, is considered inconsistent with liberty and a society that values human rights,” said Kuby.
 
Administration officials maintain that the seizure and interrogation did not constitute a formal arrest, and that al-Libi was not officially put under arrest until October 12.
 
One of the last

Karen Greenberg, director of the Center on National Security at Fordham Law School, said al-Libi is one of the last of the suspects to face justice for the 1998 bombings. Twenty-one were indicted in the case.
 
“And there are only four outstanding who haven’t been killed or captured, so it brings more closure to that case, which is a central case,” said Greenberg.
 
The greater significance, she said, is that all the trials so far have been in federal court.
 
“So it creates that narrative that our courts can try individuals who have attacked the United States, caused deaths, and can be brought to justice here in our court system and not in a military tribunal,” added Greenberg.
 
In contrast, more than 150 foreign nationals once suspected of terrorism have been held for years in a prison on the U.S. Navy's Guantanamo Bay base. About half have been cleared of suspicion. A handful of others have been tried through military tribunals, but many have neither been brought to trial or released.
 
Al-Libi reportedly was a computer expert and top aide to Osama bin Laden in the early years of al-Qaida. In Libya, however, members of his family deny that he is an al-Qaida member.

You May Like

Analyst: Joint-Arab Military Force Poses Perilous Challenge

Although international forces are desperately needed to counter the threat of the Islamic State group, analysts say conflicting alliances could escalate fighting More

Asia’s Middle Class Changes Demand for Wheat Grain Exporters

Changes in tastes and diets are boon for wheat exporters such as Australia and the United States More

S. African Comedian Taking Over Popular TV Show

Mixed-race comedian Trevor Noah, who is loved for his edgy jibes about race and language, is taking the helm from Jon Stewart at The Daily Show in US More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadistsi
X
Greg Flakus
March 30, 2015 6:48 PM
At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video With Coalition Airstrikes, Iraq Entering 'Last Page' of IS Battle

American warplanes joined Iraq's battle against the so-called 'Islamic State' in northern Iraq late Wednesday, as Iraqi ground troops launched a massive assault on Tikrit. Analysts say the offensive could take the coalition a step further towards Mosul, the largest city held by Islamic State forces. Others say it could also deepen already-dangerous sectarian tensions in the region. VOA's Heather Murdock has more from Cairo.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regret

Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Germanwings Findings Raise Issue of Psychological Testing for Pilots

More is being discovered about the co-pilot in the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. Investigators say he was hiding a medical condition, raising questions about the mental qualifications of pilots. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.
Video

Video Hi-tech Motorbike Helmet's Goal: Improve Road Safety

In cities with heavily congested traffic, people can get around much faster on a motorcycle than in a car. But a rider who is not sure of his route may have to stop to look at the map or consult a GPS. A Russian start-up company is working to make navigation easier for motorcyclists. Designers at Moscow-based LiveMap are developing a smart helmet with a built-in navigation system, head-mounted display and voice recognition. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video DOJ: Illinois National Guard Soldier Tried to Join ISIS

U.S. federal law enforcement agents arrested two suburban Chicago men accused of trying to join ISIS overseas, while also plotting attacks in the United States. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports from the Midwest state of Illinois, one of those arrested is a soldier of the Illinois National Guard.
Video

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Traditional push-rim wheelchairs create a lot of stress for arm, shoulder and neck muscles and joints. A redesigned chair, based on readily available bicycle technology, radically increases mobility while reducing the physical effort. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.

VOA Blogs

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More