For your reading pleasure, the brilliant legal mind of The Big Trunk:
I can’t explain
One of the first fruits of the PATRIOT Act was the indictment of University of South Florida Professor of Terrorism Sami al Arian. In addition to holding down his academic post, al Arian moonlighted as the North American head of Palestinian Islamic Jihad. For ten years the government monitored his communications with his terrorist friends in Gaza, but was prohibited from sharing the intercepted communications with federal prosecutors. When the PATRIOT Act brought “the wall” down, the government brought a multi-count indictment against al Arian and several confederates based in large part on the communications.
It’s hard for me to understand how a jury could have acquitted al Arian on eight counts of the indictment yesterday and deadlocked on the remaining nine that were submitted against al Arian. At Frontpage, Joe Kaufman is equally mystified, but worth reading: “Acquitting a terrorist.” After putting in its case over five-and-a-half months, al Arian rested his defense without calling a single witness. Perhaps the bigger surprise is the government’s previous successes in difficult terrorism cases such as the one involving the blind sheikh. The outcome of the al Arian case nevertheless represents a serious miscarriage of justice.
The US government builds up a huge case against al Arian (so big, in fact, that Attorney John Ashcroft goes on live TV to announce the indictments) and presents it at trial, the defense rests without calling one witness, and because the jury couldn’t find it in the evidence to convict him on even one of seventeen indictments …it’s a “serious miscarriage of justice” and Johnson doesn’t get it.
Which leads us to believe that:
A) The true believers at the Justice Department are so incompetent that Michael Brown will be hired to mentor them, in which case, we’re all doomed.
B) There was no case to be made in the first place but al Arian was sufficiently swarthy so, what the hell.
C) Someone took Scott Johnson’s bar exam for him.
D) All of the above.