I was previously a constitutional law and civil rights litigator and am now a journalist. I am the author of three New York Times bestselling books -- "How Would a Patriot Act" (a critique of Bush executive power theories), "Tragic Legacy" (documenting the Bush legacy), and With Liberty and Justice for Some (critiquing America's two-tiered justice system and the collapse of the rule of law for its political and financial elites). My fifth book - No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA and the US Surveillance State - will be released on April 29, 2014 by Holt/Metropolitan.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Letter to AG from Gulet Mohamed's lawyer

January 12, 2011

Mr. Eric H. Holder, Jr.
Attorney General of the United States
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001

SUBJECT: Request for Justice Department Probe of FBI
Misconduct in Interrogation of American Muslim Teen
Detained in Kuwait

Dear Attorney General Holder:

I hope this letter finds you in the best of health and spirits.

It is my unfortunate duty to bring to your attention allegations of
official misconduct on the part of FBI agents who allegedly continued
interrogating my client, Mr. Gulet Mohamed, even after he repeatedly
invoked his constitutionally-guaranteed right to silence and to be
represented by an attorney.

As you may know, CAIR recently asked for an investigation by the
Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice into
allegations that Kuwaiti security personnel detained and tortured Mr.
Mohamed, a 19-year-old American citizen whose family lives in
Alexandria, Va. Mr. Mohamed believe he was detained at the behest of
American officials.

In media reports about this case, U.S. government officials confirmed
that Mr. Mohamed has now been placed on a no-fly list. He remains in
detention pending deportation from Kuwait, despite the fact that no
American official has made any allegation of wrongdoing on his part.

Mr. Mohamed was previously visited by FBI agents who sought to
interrogate him. At that time, he informed the agents that he has an
attorney and that he does not wish to answer their questions.

Today, Mr. Mohamed and his family members report that he was again
visited in detention by two FBI agents. He again invoked his right to
silence and to be represented by his attorney.

Despite these declarations, the FBI agents reportedly continued to
question Mr. Mohamed for two hours. Some of their questions allegedly
touched on Mr. Mohamed's religious beliefs and practices, including
whether he has memorized the Quran and whether he had prayed his
morning (fajr) prayer. Other questions indicated to Mr. Mohamed that
the agents sought to make him a government informant on his return to
the United States.

Mr. Mohamed and his brother who was present during part of this
interrogation both say that the FBI agents became visibly angry with
and physically intimidating toward Mr. Mohamed, to the extent that
Kuwaiti officials reportedly intervened to protect him from the agents.

Based on these allegations, I respectfully request that your office
initiate an immediate investigation into the conduct of the FBI
agents involved and that appropriate actions be taken based on the
results of that investigation. It was manifestly unlawful for FBI
agents to continue their interrogation of Mr. Mohamed after he
requested the presence of his counsel.

All Americans, whatever their faith, deserve the same Fifth and Sixth
Amendment rights to due process of law and to be represented by an
attorney. Our government should demonstrate through its actions that
American Muslims have the same rights as other citizens and are not
subject to a two-tier system of justice in which their rights are not
acknowledged or respected.

If law enforcement officials have concerns about Mr. Mohammed or his
past actions, he should be allowed to return to the United States
where he may agree to being questioned in the presence of his
attorney -- free of the physical and psychological pressures of his
current detention.

Thank you in advance for your prompt attention to this important matter.
I may be contacted by phone at xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx (mobile),xxxxxxxxxxxx (office)
or by e-mail at xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.


Gadeir Abbas, Esq.
Mr. Gulet Mohamed's Attorney


President Barack Obama
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
FBI Director Robert Mueller
Mr. Eric Treene, Special Counsel for Religious Discrimination,
U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division
Rep. James Moran
Sen. James Webb