It has been awhile since we updated the Al-Arian Walk Watch, as more and more damning evidence has surfaced about the Rumpled Academic. The defense has evidently noted this too, because they are now demanding a mistrial on a technicality. When you can’t win on the evidence, try this. From the Tampa Tribune, with thanks to the Constantinopolitan Irredentist:
TAMPA – A month before the Sami Al-Arian trial began, two FBI agents interviewed a former Kuwaiti legislator in Washington.
But Isma’il al-Shatti didn’t tell the agents what they wanted to hear.
Al-Shatti said he never received any packages or letters from Al-Arian, according to an FBI report of the May 5 interview.
That includes a February 1995 letter Al-Arian wrote to Al-Shatti in which Al-Arian bragged about a recent double suicide attack and asked for money on behalf of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.
The letter was seized from Al-Arian’s home during a search in November 1995 and is an important piece of evidence in Al-Arian’s trial on charges he helped organize and finance the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. It was the first direct evidence presented by the prosecution that it says shows Al-Arian tried to raise money for the organization after providing material support to the Islamic Jihad became illegal in January 1995.
Defense attorneys Tuesday morning asked U.S. District Judge James Moody for a mistrial because they had just received the FBI’s report on the Al-Shatti interview. According to Al-Arian attorney William Moffitt, the defense attorneys argued that this was a violation of the prosecution’s legal obligation to promptly turn over to defendants any material that might help the defense.
The argument took place at a sidebar conference out of earshot of spectators in Moody’s courtroom. Jurors were not in the room.
Moody did not grant the mistrial request, but he is scheduled this morning to consider defense arguments related to the exchange of evidence.