[Ppnews] Family of slain Detroit cleric is 'hurt' by probe
Political Prisoner News
ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Thu Oct 14 18:02:58 EDT 2010
Family of slain Detroit cleric is 'hurt' by probe
By JEFF KAROUB
The Associated Press
Thursday, October 14, 2010; 5:13 PM
DETROIT -- The son of a Detroit mosque leader
killed during a shootout with the FBI said
Thursday he and his family are disappointed and
hurt by a U.S. Justice Department report clearing agents of any wrongdoing.
Omar Regan said the federal review into the death
last October of his father, Imam Luqman Ameen
Abdullah, lacked sufficient evidence to prove his
father's death was justified. He hoped the report
released Wednesday would reveal violations by FBI
agents during the raid in a Dearborn warehouse
that included dozens of federal, state and local law enforcement officers.
"We hurt - we really hurt, and we're disappointed
in the Department of Justice," said Regan, who
was joined at a news conference by Christian,
Muslim and civil-rights leaders. "It's been
nearly a year. I honestly had high hopes that
they would honestly see injustice. It's clear to
everybody on the ground level that it was not legitimate."
Abdullah's widow, Amina Abdullah, also attended
but declined to speak on advice from her attorneys.
Regan and others at the meeting said there's no
additional audio, video, ballistics or other
evidence to support the FBI's claim that his
father shot or even possessed a gun. Abdullah was
shot 20 times when agents tried to arrest him on stolen-goods charges.
The report concludes that "the evidence indicates
that each of the FBI agents who fired his weapon
had a legitimate reason to believe that deadly
force was necessary and reasonable in order to
prevent Imam Abdullah from shooting agents with a
handgun that he brandished and fired."
The report also concluded it was not unreasonable
for other agents to release a dog to help subdue
Abdullah as he resisted. And it said that the
agents who handcuffed and searched him once he
was subdued neither injured him nor used unreasonable force.
The assistant attorney general for civil rights,
E. Perez, met with Abdullah's family in Detroit
on Wednesday and later with representatives of
interested local groups to explain the department's findings.
The agents were previously cleared by Michigan
Attorney General Mike Cox, and a 300-page report
from the Dearborn Police Department backed up that decision.
Lena Masri, attorney for the Council on
American-Islamic Relations' Michigan chapter who
also is representing Abdullah's family, said the
federal report's findings are based on interviews
with four agents who fired weapons and they were
conducted seven months after the shooting. She
said the report lacked statements from other
agents and nongovernmental witnesses.
"They're asking us to accept the statements of four shooters," she said.
Masri said the family is reviewing reports and
documents and seeking more information from
various law enforcement agencies. It will
consider filing a wrongful death lawsuit later.
Dawud Walid, executive director of the council's
Michigan chapter, said his group and others
continue to call for the Justice Department to
review the FBI's use of informants in mosques. He
said the government failed to probe the potential
misuse of informants "acting as agent-provocateurs in this case."
Federal authorities have described Abdullah as
the leader of a radical Sunni group that aims to
create an Islamic state within the U.S.
Authorities say Abdullah preached hate for the
government and encouraged followers to commit
violence, especially against police and federal
agents. According to court records, Abdullah had
even warned that "it will be straight-up war" if
the government engaged with him.
Abdullah's family has denied that he was a radical cleric.
"I know who my father was," Regan said.
© 2010 The Associated Press
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
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