Prosecution rests in Padilla case

The defense takes over in the trial of Jose Padilla, the U.S. citizen once accused of being a dirty bomber and held as an "enemy combatant."


Alex Koppelman
July 13, 2007 9:07PM (UTC)

It took nine weeks of testimony, but the prosecution has finally rested its case in the trial of Jose Padilla, the U.S. citizen once accused of being a dirty bomber and held as an "enemy combatant" at President Bush's direction, and his two co-defendants.

Padilla is not actually charged with plotting to build or explode a dirty bomb; instead, he and his co-defendants, Adham Amin Hassoun and Kifah Wael Jayyousi, are accused of providing support for al-Qaida. The case focuses on Hassoun and Jayyousi, who were the original defendants in the case, to which Padilla was later added when the administration decided to move him to the civilian court system ahead of a court review of his detention. There is one key bit of physical evidence against Padilla, however: an application for training by al-Qaida that is purportedly signed by Padilla and contains his fingerprints.

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According to the Los Angeles Times, U.S. District Judge Marcia Cook, the presiding judge in the case, has ruled that the jury may not hear about the three-and-a-half years Padilla spent in solitary confinement in a naval brig while designated as an enemy combatant, including any information about confessions allegedly obtained from him at the time. Padilla's lawyers have previously alleged that he was unfit to stand trial because of his time in the brig, an argument Cook rejected.

The trial is expected to continue until August.


Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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