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Lawyers for Minnesota terror suspects argue ISIL not a terrorist organization

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Lawyers for Minnesota terror suspects argue ISIL not a terrorist organization

Defense attorneys for seven suspects charged with supporting terrorism are arguing that the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is not a terrorist organization because it operates a government and regulates services for citizens living under its control in Syria.

In one of several motions filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis, the attorneys argued that despite its reputation for brutality, ISIL carries many characteristics of a government that tends to day-to-day business and that therefore criminal charges against the defendants are too broad.

“While the group has adopted harshly violent and repressive tactics, and engages in military and insurgency attacks against the Syrian and Iraqi armies, it has also embarked on a systematic process of civilian governance over the eight to 10 million people with the territory it controls,” attorneys said.

The statutes under which the defendants are charged prohibit providing support under the direction or control of a terrorist group. The attorneys argue that when a terrorist group controls an entire territory, simply being in that country would effectively become, under the current charges, support to the terrorist group. But when services are provided, it’s no longer possible to describe that territory as being part of a terrorist state.

“Mere travel to Syria, or willingness to ‘join’ ISIL, cannot constitutionally be equated with material support. Accordingly, the material support statute is void,” the attorneys argued.

In April, six of the seven defendants in the case were arrested by FBI agents following a 10-month investigation. No trial date has been set. A hearing on motions is scheduled Sept. 2 in front of U.S. District Judge Michael Davis.

Other motions included a request to dial back a heavy security presence at the trial because the attorneys said it could negatively influence a jury. Current hearings have a large contingent of police and Homeland Security officers, and at least one bomb-sniffing dog.

“If allowed, this extraordinary display of security would be present from the moment jurors arrive at the courthouse until after they leave, serving as a constant reminder, not just of the fact that Defendants are accused of a crime, but of the fact that they are accused of a crime related to terrorism,” the motion stated. “ … The security appears not to be designed to protect against potential danger posed by the accused but, rather, perceived danger from members of the Somali community who are not accused of any crime.”

http://www.startribune.com/lawyers-for-minnesota-terror-suspects-argue-isil-not-a-terrorist-organization/321094901/


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bah - it makes sense they presented the argument, but it ain't gonna fly.


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If sniff-bombing dogs are present, they're taking this seriously.


06-04-2007 = TSC stamps postal return-receipt for I-129f.

06-11-2007 = NOA1 date (unknown to me).

07-20-2007 = Phoned Immigration Officer; got WAC#; where's NOA1?

09-25-2007 = Touch (first-ever).

09-28-2007 = NOA1, 23 days after their 45-day promise to send it (grrrr).

10-20 & 11-14-2007 = Phoned ImmOffs; "still pending."

12-11-2007 = 180 days; file is "between workstations, may be early Jan."; touches 12/11 & 12/12.

12-18-2007 = Call; file is with Division 9 ofcr. (bckgrnd check); e-prompt to shake it; touch.

12-19-2007 = NOA2 by e-mail & web, dated 12-18-07 (187 days; 201 per VJ); in mail 12/24/07.

01-09-2008 = File from USCIS to NVC, 1-4-08; NVC creates file, 1/15/08; to consulate 1/16/08.

01-23-2008 = Consulate gets file; outdated Packet 4 mailed to fiancee 1/27/08; rec'd 3/3/08.

04-29-2008 = Fiancee's 4-min. consular interview, 8:30 a.m.; much evidence brought but not allowed to be presented (consul: "More proof! Second interview! Bring your fiance!").

05-05-2008 = Infuriating $12 call to non-English-speaking consulate appointment-setter.

05-06-2008 = Better $12 call to English-speaker; "joint" interview date 6/30/08 (my selection).

06-30-2008 = Stokes Interrogations w/Ecuadorian (not USC); "wait 2 weeks; we'll mail her."

07-2008 = Daily calls to DOS: "currently processing"; 8/05 = Phoned consulate, got Section Chief; wrote him.

08-07-08 = E-mail from consulate, promising to issue visa "as soon as we get her passport" (on 8/12, per DHL).

08-27-08 = Phoned consulate (they "couldn't find" our file); visa DHL'd 8/28; in hand 9/1; through POE on 10/9 with NO hassles(!).

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The new normal.

Is the Islamic State Islamic?


"The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies."

Senator Barack Obama
Senate Floor Speech on Public Debt
March 16, 2006



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