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Lawyer Tries to Ban The Bomb in Federal Court
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In Detroit this week a federal judge refused to allow the blocking of prosecutors from using the word ‘bomb’ in any context in the ongoing trial of a Nigerian man. The man, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab , is accused of attempting to destroy a Detroit-bound airliner for the known terrorist group al Qaeda. Abdulmutallab, who is 24, is currently charged with attempting to detonate a bomb that he had concealed inside his underwear aboard a Northwest Airlines Flight, number 253, on Christmas of 2009.

When Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab entered court for trial he was wearing an African gown that was paired with a black skullcap. He sat silently next to his appointed reserve council, Mr. Chambers. Mr. Chambers as the judge to band words such as ‘bomb’ or ‘explosives’ until the closing arguments of the trial. His stance was that it should be up to the members of the jury to try and figure out what the cause of the smoke and the fire on the plan were.


The request was not met as favorably at Mr. Chambers would have hoped. “I’m going to deny that motion.”, said U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds, “… It makes no sense whatsoever.” In addition Judge Edmunds ordered a Detroit-area attorney. One Mr. Kurt Haskell, to leave the court before opening statements began. Since
While Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is currently exercising his right to act as his own council he has chosen to rely on Mr. Chambers, as his reserve council, to do a lot of the day-by-day work in the courtroom. Mr. Chambers is expected to be the one who will question most of the witnesses during the trial. He is also currently preparing to give his opening statement at trial.

For his part Mr. Abdulmutallab has written a few of his own court filings. One of the most interesting ones was a request to be judged not by American law, but by Islamic law. He has also raised an objection to every attempt by the prosecution to add experts to the witness list that relate to al Qaeda and martyrdom.

While sitting in court he has often made unusual statements. Those statements include his insistence that Osama bin Laden, and another radical member of the Muslim clergy that was recently reported as killed by US soldiers, are still alive.

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Of course the challenges will not stop here. Mr. Chambers has already told The Associated Press that Abdulmutallab and himself plan to “challenge everything” that is offered by federal prosecutors,. This includes the chemical mix that was able to make smoke and fire inside the cabin of Flight 253 without causing an explosion.





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