RealNews

Tampa trial will test antiterrorism law

When a Tampa professor was indicted last month for financing a murderous Islamic group, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft gave credit to a new antiterrorism law for making it possible. The USA Patriot Act of 2001, passed after Sept. 11, allowed the use of intelligence wiretaps gathered over the past decade to support the criminal charges filed against Sami al-Arian, who has since been fired by the University of South Florida. The Department of Justice’s surveillance of his phone calls, faxes and other correspondence had been off-limits to prosecutors until a special federal appeals court ruled they could use the declassified evidence in their stalled case against the computer engineering professor. Al-Arian was charged as the U.S. leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, which has been linked to the killings of 110 people in Israel. Full Story

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