Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Lawyers for a 29-year-old Chicago man charged with plotting to become a suicide bomber in Somalia have asked a federal judge to release him on bond.
The lawyers for Shaker Masri asked U.S. District Judge Sharon Coleman Monday to release Masri on home confinement with electronic monitoring and a cousin acting as a third-party custodian, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
Masri was arrested in 2010 and spent 600 days in solitary confinement before being moved to the general population at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago.
Masri's trial, originally scheduled for July, has been postponed to September.
"Obviously, in a terrorism-related case, most people don't get out on bond," said Thomas A. Durkin, one of Masri's lawyers. "But this case is extraordinary in the sense that most people don't have to sit and wait for a trial the length of time he has. This is [an] unreasonable delay."
But Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicole Kim called Masri a flight risk and a danger to the community and said he had an "obsession with self-sacrificial destruction."
"He intended to commit indiscriminate murder of innocent lives," Kim said.
She said he had told a former cellmate if freed, he would stay in the United States so he could "make a statement the whole world would hear."
Masri's lawyers characterized the government's case as weak and said it was based on the word of a confidential informant.
The prosecution has said Masri was recorded describing suicide bombers as "martyrs" for Islam and saying he wanted to do harm.
"I wish to know how the explosive belt was made," Masri allegedly said to a friend wearing a wire, charges state. "I will wear one, and I will not take it off."