U.S. Won't Seek Death Penalty Against Embassy Bombing Defendant
Former Guantanamo detainee Ahmed Ghailani, who was transferred to New York for trial on conspiracy charges involving the 1998 bombings of U.S. Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, won't face the death penalty. Attorney General Eric Holder released the following statement through a DOJ spokesman yesterday:
“Ahmed Ghailani is on trial for the murder of 224 people, and we are committed to bringing him to justice for his alleged crimes. Other defendants in the embassy bombings case have either already received life sentences or will not be subject to the death penalty because the United States agreed not to seek it as a condition of their extradition. Given those circumstances and other factors in this case, the attorney general authorized the U.S. attorney to seek a life sentence.”
Ghalani has alleged he was tortured while kept in an overseas prison at the direction of the CIA:
Mr. Ghailani was captured in 2004 and held in secret prisons run by the Central Intelligence Agency until 2006, when he was moved to the Navy base at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.
A Tanzanian believed to be in his mid-30s, Mr. Ghailani has claimed in court papers that he was a victim of cruel interrogation techniques and was not afforded the right to remain silent or to have a lawyer.
The Defense Department also determined Ghalani should not face the death penalty before Ghalani was transferred.
Mr. Ghailani was charged with assisting in preparations for the bombing in Tanzania. In 2007, he apologized for his role before a military review panel at Guantánamo, but claimed to have been unaware of the plotters’ goal.
|< Roman Polanski Loses First Bid for Release | Tuesday Afternoon Open Thread >|