Judge Suspends Sentencing Of Would-Be Bomber After NSA Revelations | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

NPR : News

Filed Under:

Judge Suspends Sentencing Of Would-Be Bomber After NSA Revelations

The sentencing of a Somali-American man convicted of trying to bomb a holiday tree-lighting ceremony in Portland, Ore., in 2010 has been put on hold indefinitely. That move comes just days after the Justice Department notified his lawyers that part of the case against him had been "derived from" secret NSA electronic surveillance.

Both sides met Tuesday in the chambers of U.S. District Judge Garr King to discuss next steps. The judge later issued a public order delaying the sentencing of Mohamed Osman Mohamud, which had been scheduled to take place Dec. 18.

"If sentencing remains appropriate, the court will reset the sentencing hearing," after it rules on motions from federal public defenders Stephen R. Sady and Lisa Hay, the judge's order said.

The move could foreshadow months or even years of legal wrangling, if the case becomes a vehicle to challenge the constitutionality of once-secret NSA monitoring of overseas email and social media accounts.

The Supreme Court this year turned back a challenge to surveillance law by a group of human rights workers, lawyers and reporters because they could not demonstrate they had been monitored or subjected to any harm. But the fresh disclosure to Mohamud and a series of other defendants in cases where U.S. prosecutors used secret surveillance could help overcome that hurdle.

Defense attorneys Sady and Hay will file court papers seeking discovery from prosecutors early next year. The defense lawyers had no comment on the latest developments in the case. But the heart of their arguments to the Portland jury that convicted Mohamud was that undercover FBI agents entrapped him using a phony fertilizer bomb. Mohamud, 22, has been living in federal custody in northwest Oregon.

For previous coverage, see Justice Says FISA Was Used To Help Crack 2010 Oregon Bomb Plot

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Wounded Bull-Runner: 'If You Run Long Enough, You Get Gored'

Bill Hillmann, a writer from Chicago, contributed to the book Fiesta: How to Survive the Bulls of Pamplona. He was gored at this year's running of the bulls in that city, but says he plans to return.
NPR

What If The World Cup Were Awarded For Saving Trees And Drinking Soda?

We thought you'd get a kick out of seeing how the four teams in the final World Cup matches stack up in global health and development.
NPR

What Could $100 Million Buy You — Besides Campaign Ads In Kentucky?

Spending on the Kentucky Senate race might reach $100 million. So what else could that get you in the Bluegrass State? NPR's Tamara Keith finds out when she calls up some local business owners.
NPR

Looking For Free Sperm, Women May Turn To Online Forums

Bypassing commercial sperm banks, thousands are logging on to websites where women can connect with men at no cost. Anecdotes abound, but the scope of the unregulated activity is unclear.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.