November 23, 2001
Yemeni detainee to fight passport charges
The Toronto Sun
A Yemeni man will go to trial December 19 to fight extradition charges to the U.S. after two Lufthansa airlines crew uniforms and false passports were found in his luggage on a flight to Chicago.
Lawyer Gary Batasar, who represents Nageed Al- Hadi, says court documents show the 35- year- old faces only passport fraud charges and that he was not involved in the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington.
Batasar said the minor charges do not justify having confined his client to a segregated jail cell for the past 72 days.
“He’s a withered and broken man,” he said.
Batasar compared Al- Hadi’s jail conditions to that of a Taliban prisoner in a “Third World jail,” adding he hoped that segregation would end now that jail officials know Al- Hadi is not a terrorist.
Al- Hadi was plucked out of an airplane headed from Germany to Chicago, which was diverted here when hijacked jetliners crashed in the U.S.
“Documents signed by U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell and U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft clearly vindicate Mr. Al- Hadi. They clearly indicate that this person, from day one, has maintained that he had nothing to so with any terrorist organization.”
Asked to explain the false passports and crew uniforms his client carried, Batasar said: “At the end of the day, there was nothing linking him.”