[Ppnews] Free Tarek Mehanna

Political Prisoner News ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Wed Oct 26 11:11:55 EDT 2011



Free Tarek Mehanna!

By Frank Neisser
Boston
Published Oct 24, 2011 9:44 PM
http://www.workers.org/2011/us/tarek_mehanna_1027/


Dr. Tarek Mehanna

Dr. Tarek Mehanna is a 28-year-old Muslim, an Egyptian-American and a 
graduate of the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health 
Sciences. He has been held in solitary confinement 23 hours a day 
since his arrest in 2009.

Mehanna's trial begins with jury selection on Oct. 24 at the Moakley 
Federal Court House in Boston. The Free Tarek Mahanna Support 
Committee is calling on supporters to pack the court on Oct. 27 at 
9:00 a.m. Supporters can get information on the defense campaign at 
www.freetarek.com

Mehanna's supporters say he is a respected leader in his community 
who has done nothing other than be critical of the foreign policy of 
the United States, particularly as it impacts Muslim countries and 
the Muslim community. Because of his stature in the Muslim community, 
he was repeatedly pursued by the FBI to be an informant on others in 
the community.

When he steadfastly refused, he was arrested in 2008 and charged with 
making "false statements to the FBI." Arrested again in 2009, the 
charge was "material support for terrorism," with no new information 
about any actions on Mehanna's part.

The sum total of actions Mehanna is charged with involve having 
conversations, translating books, traveling to the Middle East and 
posting to websites. Yet he faces life in prison if convicted. He has 
been denied bail twice, even though the FBI released him to the 
community after his first arrest and presented no information as to 
why or how he had since become so much more dangerous.

The entire case follows the alarming pattern of persecution of 
Muslims that has emerged since 9/11: the use of secret evidence; 
inflammatory accusations fed to the press by government prosecutors 
in advance of trial; manipulation of informants and cooperating 
witnesses through threats and rewards; and the use of "material 
support of terrorism" charges to criminalize dissent.

Mehanna's case has garnered wide community support. Supporters have 
packed each and every hearing on the case over the last two years. On 
Sept. 24 at the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center, the case 
was featured in a program presented by the National Coalition to 
Protect Civil Freedoms. Mehanna's brother Tamer explained the case.

Supporters are urged to call             617-748-3159       or fax 
617-748- 3694, the office of U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, to express 
outrage at this fraudulent prosecution and to demand that all charges 
be dropped.

Similar cases involving the FBI's pattern of preemptive prosecution 
and Cointelpro-style entrapment, lying and brutal mistreatment, 
including "special administrative measures" and Communication 
Management Units, were presented by Project SALAM and family members 
of the victims.




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