Has the ACLU ever seen a jihadist enemy of freedom that it didn’t like? “ACLU booted from Dzhokhar Tsarnaev hearing,” by Laurel J. Sweet for the Boston Herald, November 11 (thanks to Kenneth):
The American Civil Liberties Union has been shut out of weighing in on accused Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s claims of hardship behind bars at a hearing tomorrow to address whether the alleged terrorist deserves to be cut some slack while he awaits trial.
U.S. District Court Judge George A. O”Toole Jr. also ordered a memorandum the ACLU Foundation of Massachusetts submitted in support of its position stricken from the public record, explaining in his decision, “While there may be no positive rule forbidding it, in my judgment a trial court presiding over a criminal prosecution should not receive or consider volunteered submissions by non-parties except as may be specifically authorized by statute … or other authority.”
An ACLU representative could not be reached for comment yesterday.
In documents filed last week, the ACLU stated it planned to fight for the accused 20-year-old terrorist’s right to access to his attorneys and information his lawyers claim is critical to defending him against a potential death sentence, calling it “no trifling matter” that in the ACLU”s view Tsarnaev’s Sixth Amendment right to a fair trial was being threatened by the conditions of his solitary confinement at the federal lockup at Fort Devens.
The former UMass Dartmouth student’s taxpayer-funded counsel will go before O”Toole tomorrow to argue for vacating what they deem “extraordinary and severe” restrictions they liken to “torture,” including that Tsarnaev is denied TV and radio, family photos, prayer with other inmates and visitation from anyone other than his lawyers and immediate family, [sic]