[Ppnews] Al-Arian Released After 5 Years to Await 2nd Trial

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue Sep 2 17:01:34 EDT 2008

Al-Arian Released After 5 Years to Await 2nd Trial


posted 4:25 pm Tue September 02, 2008 - Alexandria, Va.

Former professor Sami Al-Arian, who was once charged by the U.S.
government with being a top Palestinian terrorist, has been released from
custody for the first time in more than five years.

Immigration authorities released Al-Arian to the custody of his daughter,
just hours before a federal judge had ordered the agency to explain
Al-Arian's continued detention.

Al-Arian, who once taught computer science at the University of South
Florida, has been in the custody of either federal marshals or immigration
authorities since February 2003, when federal prosecutors charged him with
being a leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

His trial on those charges resulted in an acquittal on some counts and a
hung jury on others. He eventually struck a plea bargain admitting to
lesser charges.

He currently faces contempt of court charges in federal court in Virginia
for failing to testify to a grand jury. Prosecutors strongly opposed his
release while he awaits trial.
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