Would you pay $16,000 for rubber hands for this guy? “Thug puts us on hook for 16G,” by Josh Margolin and Bruce Golding for the New York Post, October 9:
We”re giving this hatemonger a hand “” and probably two.
Taxpayers will foot the bill to replace radical Islamic preacher Abu Hamza al-Masri’s infamous hooks, The Post has learned.
And the cost “” while not quite an arm and a leg “” is expected to run up to $16,000 so the one-eyed, terror-loving thug can feed and clean himself in the slammer.
Al-Masri’s metal hooks were removed from his forearm stumps Friday night after he was handed over by the Brits to face terror-related charges in Manhattan federal court.
The move capped an eight-year extradition battle during which al-Masri whined repeatedly about the “oppressive” conditions he expected to face behind bars in America.
Although al-Masri’s lawyer demanded on Saturday that prison officials immediately return his signature hooks, sources said they”re considered a security risk and there’s “no way” he’s getting them back.
But because depriving al-Masri of a “reasonable standard” of medical care in jail would violate his civil rights “” and provide grounds for an appeal “” he’s expected to be outfitted with a pair of no-frills, cable-operated rubber hands.
“We have people on contract. We”d have someone come in and do it,” a federal law-enforcement source said.
“The rule is you give the guy what they had before. Not anything better.”
According to prosthetics maker Arimed, any replacement hands would have to be custom-fitted to what’s left of al-Masri’s upper limbs.
“Passive,” non-electronic prosthetics retail for between $5,000 and $8,000 each, while higher-tech models that feature electronics and sensors can cost up to $50,000 each, depending on how many fingers are functional.
But the federal Bureau of Prisons” official policy states that while inmates “deserve medically necessary health care,” all of their services “will be obtained at the lowest possible cost.”
A bureau spokeswoman declined yesterday to say how officials in Manhattan’s Metropolitan Correctional Center have been accommodating al-Masri so far.
Al-Masri lost his hands after suffering injuries he claims were inflicted by an exploding mine while he battled the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan in the 1980s.
A former Prisons official said that the 2000 attack on MCC guard Louis Pepe “” who was stabbed in the eye with a sharpened comb by Mamdouh Mahmud Salim, a former top aide to Osama bin Laden “” was undoubtedly a factor in the decision to take away al-Masri’s infamous hooks.
And because al-Masri apparently is being held in solitary confinement in the MCC”s “terror wing,” he’s probably eating his meals through a straw inside his cell and otherwise being left to his own devices, according to the same source.
“I know the correction officers aren’t going to be feeding him, that’s for sure,” the source said….