Federal Judge Orders Release of Tortured Gitmo Detainee

U.S. District Court Judge James Robertson today ordered the release of Guanatanamo detainee Mohamedou Slahi,who has been held without charges since 2002.

The order is classified and has not been released. Prior investigations into Slahi's detention showed he had been subjected to severe abuse.

Those probes found Slahi had been subjected to sleep deprivation, exposed to extremes of heat and cold, moved around the base blindfolded, and at one point taken into the bay on a boat and threatened with death. Investigators also found interrogators had told him they would arrest his mother and have her jailed as the only female detainee at Guantánamo if he did not cooperate.

His abuse was so bad the military prosecutor in his case resigned. His lawyer, Nancy Hollander, says:

"He's been incarcerated, tortured and interrogated and rendered illegally," said attorney Nancy Hollander of Albuquerque, N.M., who represents Slahi free of charge. "After almost 10 years the government has not been able to meet the minimal burden to detain him that's required under habeas. He should be free."

Slahi is the 34th detainee ordered released by a federal court.[More...]

Slahi faces no criminal charges. He arrived at Guantánamo in August 2002, nearly a year after he turned himself in for questioning in his native Mauritania in late September 2001 and found himself handed over first to Jordan for interrogation and then to U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

He filed his petition for habeas corpus himself in handwritten English on March 3, 2005, on a form provided by prison camp staff.

Slhai says he "yessed" all the questions put to him under torture:

In November 2006 he wrote his lawyers that he had denied any wrongdoing while in custody until he was tortured. "I yess-ed every accusation my interrogators made," after they tortured him, he said. "I even wrote the infamous confession about me planning to hit the CN Tower in Toronto."

He also has a sense of humor:

He also made light of his attorneys request to list the number of times he was interrogated since his capture. "That's like asking Charlie Sheen how many women he dated."

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  • Display: Sort:
    Nancy Hollander (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Peter G on Mon Mar 22, 2010 at 08:32:24 PM EST
    of Albuquerque, New Mexico, former president of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, is one terrific attorney.

    Thank you. (none / 0) (#2)
    by Cream City on Tue Mar 23, 2010 at 12:25:35 AM EST
    Moving to read J's note on Hollander's work, and now the info you link on another hard-working defender of our freedoms whose name I never knew.

    My new name for the shortlist to replace Stevens.  Just the justice to help handle the onslaught of "homeland security" cases still to come, I suspect.


    anyone making book (none / 0) (#3)
    by cpinva on Tue Mar 23, 2010 at 01:42:20 AM EST
    on him actually being released? just because a judge orders it, doesn't mean the administration will submit to that order. see: bush, george