news
A federal appeals court Monday reinstated indictments against seven defendants accused of raising money for a terror organization with links to ousted Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein.
A federal appeals court Monday reinstated indictments against seven defendants accused of raising money for a terror organization with links to ousted Iraqi ruler Saddam Hussein. In a victory for the Bush administration's war on terror, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a Los Angeles federal judge who declared the 1996 terror financing law unconstitutional. The law makes it illegal to funnel money — "material support" — to organizations the State Department says are linked to terrorism, about 30 groups in all. Before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the government rarely used the terror law. The administration has since used it to win dozens of terror convictions nationwide, from Lackawanna, N.Y., to Seattle and Portland, Ore. One legal expert criticized the decision. "This is a troubling result for a nation that believes in freedom of association," said David Cole, an expert on the law in question at the Georgetown University Law Center. The case stems from a 2001 indictment against the seven Los Angeles defendants for allegedly providing several hundred thousand dollars to the Mujahedin-e Khalq, which the appeals court said "participated in various terrorist activities against the Iranian regime" and "carried out terrorist activities with the support" of Saddam's regime. U.S. District Judge Robert Takasugi invalidated the law, saying it did not provide the groups a proper forum to contest their terror designations. His ruling had no immediate effect beyond the Los Angeles case. On Monday, a three-judge panel of the San Francisco-based federal appeals court overruled the judge — and went a step further, saying individuals accused of supporting the listed groups cannot challenge whether the groups should be listed. The government, the court said, must prove only "that a particular organization was designated at the time the material support was given, not whether the government made a correct designation." The decision mirrors a ruling this year by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., upholding the conviction of a man who funneled money to the militant Hezbollah organization while insisting he had a right to challenge that group's listing. "The Justice Department is pleased that yet another court has upheld the constitutionality of the material support statute, a key weapon in our arsenal of legal remedies in the war on terror," spokesman John Nowacki said. The seven Los Angeles defendants said it was a violation of their First Amendment rights to be prohibited from contributing money to groups they say are not terror organizations, and they should have the right to prove the group in question should not be on the State Department's list. No trial date has been set in their case.

New Articles

US Is Helping ‘Bloodthirsty Cult’ – the MEK – to Overthrow Iran’s Government

In pursuit of regime change in Iran, the Trump administration and prominent Republicans and Democrats alike are supporting the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK), which former top US official Larry Wilkerson says...

Was it an Iranian terror plot or a false flag operation?

Belgian police say an Iranian diplomat was involved in a plot to bomb a rally of the dissident Iranian group MEK, but Iran says MEK itself is to blame.

Stephen Harper knocked for speaking at 'Free Iran' rally hosted by 'cult' ex-terror group

Harper's own government considered Mojahedin-e Khalq or MEK a terrorist organization as recently as 2012

Giuliani, Gingrich Visit MeK Conference to Push for Iran Regime Change

Trump aides see once-banned terror group as replacing Iranian government

The Despicable Hawkish Embrace of the MEK

The Trump administration’s MEK fans participated in the group’s annual rally in Paris over the weekend:

Most viewed

Basque militant group ETA: 'We really are sorry'

The Basque militant group ETA on Friday offered an unprecedented apology for the pain caused during its more than four decades of armed campaign for independence from Spain and France...

M.E.K.: The Group John Bolton Wants to Rule Iran

As talks with North Korea approach, the new national security adviser, John Bolton, has long pushed for regime change in another country with nuclear ambitions: Iran. One of his chosen...

Rudy Went to Albania to Hang Out with A Iran Regime Change Cult

Mujahideen-e Khalq (MEK) is a notorious cult-like group of Iranian exiles which appears to have close to literally zero support inside Iran but has for years cultivated significant ties to...

April 1992 marks the MKO’s determination to conduct terror acts abroad

Experts and political representatives from Albania were in the European Parliament last week, asking Europe for help in preventing the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK) from toxifying their country’s internal and foreign...

Footprints of MKO terrorists, monarchists seen in recent unrests in SW Iran

The protests in the city of Kazeroun in Southwestern Iran ended and the situation came under control after Mojahedin-e Khalq Organization (MKO, also known as the MEK, PMOI and NCRI)...