Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Sami Al-Arian convicted on one count

George W. and Laura Bush with Al-Arian in 2000.

The former University of South Florida computer engineering professor took the plea deal even though a jury failed to convict him on any of the 17 charges against him after a six-month trial last year. His family said he took the deal to get out of jail and end their suffering.

Al-Arian once was considered one of the most important terrorist figures brought to trial in the United States since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorism attacks. His indictment in 2003 was hailed by then-Attorney General John Ashcroft as one of the first triumphs of the Patriot Act, enacted in the weeks after Sept. 11.

Al-Arian was part of a group meeting with Karl Rove in 2001 and received a personal apology letter from George W. Bush when Al-Arian's son (at the time a Congressional intern) was wrongfully kicked out of the White House Complex.

Items Submitted as Evidence in his trial:

No. 705867 letter from Congressman Coble to Al-Arian; photo of President George W. Bush and First Lady with Sami Al-Arian & family; Christmas card from Bill and Hilary Clinton; note from Jeb Bush to Sami, etc.

No. 705886 from U.S. Secret Service to Abdullah Al-Arian; 8/31/01 letter apologizing for kicking him out of the White House; 8/2/2001 Letter to Mrs. Al-Arian from the White House

Wikipedia entry on Al-Arian


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