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Justice Dept. Warns of Risk to Prosecution and Security

The Justice Department warned a federal appeals court today that a decision to allow Zacarias Moussaoui to question a captured member of Al Qaeda would do “immediate and irreparable” harm to national security and would imperil the prosecution of other major terror suspects. In an argument intended to salvage the only major prosecution to result directly from the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks, Assistant Attorney General Michael Chertoff said that Mr. Moussaoui had no constitutional right to question enemy combatants held overseas, even if they might have information that could help him defend himself against charges that carry the death penalty. “This is not a Sixth Amendment case,” Mr. Chertoff told a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, alluding to the right of criminal defendants to seek out witnesses on their behalf under the Sixth Amendment of the Constitution. “What the defendant wants is to expand the Sixth Amendment.” Full Story

OODA Analyst

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