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April 10, 2007

Should GITMO outcomes impact federal sentencing in terrorism prosecutions?

This article in the New York Sun highlights how defendants can try to use events at GITMO in support of arguments for a lower sentence in standard federal court sentencing:

The nine-month prison sentence recently handed down at the Guantanamo Bay detainment camp to an Australian who served Al Qaeda could sway federal judges on the mainland toward leniency in terrorism-related cases, an expert in sentencing says. The first case to test this possibility will be called today in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, where a Brooklyn man who owns an Islamic bookstore faces sentencing for plotting to send money overseas to jihadists in Chechnya and Afghanistan.

Abdulrahman Farhane likely faces about 13 years in prison, according to the federal guidelines.  Lawyers for Farhane are saying the sentence the Australian, David Hicks, received is the appropriate sentence for him as well.  "It would be disproportionate for the Court to sentence Mr. Farhane (who discussed transferring money overseas and lied about the fact) to a term of imprisonment greater than Mr. Hicks … who left his native Australia to wage Jihad," a lawyer for Farhane, Michael Hueston, wrote recently to the judge, Loretta Preska.

April 10, 2007 at 09:24 AM | Permalink

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