But Aafia promised no more outbursts in court! The shenanigans continue at the Aafia Siddiqui trial in NYC. From the New York Times:
"The defendant was ejected from a Lower Manhattan courtroom — not once, but twice — on Monday (1-25-2010) for loudly proclaiming her innocence. And, in a separate episode between the two ejections, a spectator who pointed his thumb and index finger like a gun at the jury while mouthing an expletive was taken into custody and later released."
Isnt that contempt of court or something like that? Juror intimidation? They should have kept him in custody for the remainder of the trial. The two jurors who said they felt threatened were dismissed by Judge Berman, and replaced by alternates.
"The trial, which is in its second week, is taking place under heavy security in United States District Court, with a metal detector and guards at the courtroom door. Still, there have been breaches. On Monday, Judge Richard M. Berman noted some of them in explaining his ruling against a defense motion for greater public access to the court."
"So far, three people have sneaked recording devices into the courtroom, said Judge Berman, adding that one audience member had even passed a cellphone, which is also banned, to a member of the defense team."
The defense asked Judge Richard Berman for a mistrial on Monday, "saying her (Aafia's) constitutional rights to a fair trial and presumption of innocence have been violated." AP of Pakistan provides more details on the court case:
"Other grounds for a mistrial cited by (defense lawyer) Ms. Moreno were beefed up security measures outside the courtroom requiring visitors to the trial to provide personal identification and sign in."
Judge Berman denied the motion. More details on this matter from a Caged Prisoners article on Day 5:
"After jurors were dismissed for the day, defense attorney Linda Moreno once again asked for a mistrial, saying that the U.S. Marshals had removed Siddiqui roughly from the 'courtroom in front of the jury in a manner that 'denigrates the presumption of innocence.' The judge declined Moreno's request and said that perhaps the defense should focus more on 'reigning in' their client. 'Dr. Siddiqui doesn't talk to us,' Moreno said in reference to herself and the other members of the defense team. 'I tried to talk to her today,' said Moreno. 'She indicated if I didn't leave immediately she was going to accuse me of harassment.' "
This is a zoo, a fiasco and an outrage. As Michelle Malkin notes:
"Now, imagine the scene being repeated in 12 or 20 or 25 more courtrooms across America simultaneously with similar high-value suspects and the jihadi dregs of Gitmo."
Petra Bartosiewicz, a free lance journalist who recently published an article about Siddiqui for Harper's Magazine, is closely following the trial. Bartosiewicz is posting daily reports at Caged Prisoners.These are very detailed reports of the trial and testimonies, and you really get a feel for the craziness of the court room. As always, stay tuned.