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Barrett808 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-29-06 08:42 PM
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U.S. judge weighs Saddam request
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U.S. judge weighs Saddam request
By MATT APUZZO, Associated Press Writer
20 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - A U.S. judge was considering a last-minute request to delay Saddam Hussein's execution Friday night.

Lawyers for the former Iraqi president asked U.S. District Court Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly for a stay late Friday afternoon. Kollar-Kotelly held a brief hearing by telephone and was expected to issue a written decision Friday night.

No ruling had been made by 8:15 p.m. EST.

The request was a long-shot based on a creative legal argument. Attorneys argued that because Hussein also faces a civil lawsuit in Washington, he has rights as a civil defendant that would be violated if he is executed. He has not received notice of those rights and the consequences that the lawsuit would have on his estate, his attorneys said.

"To protect those rights, defendant Saddam Hussein requests an order of this court providing a stay of his execution until further notice of this court," attorney Nicholas Gilman wrote.

A similar request by the former chief justice of the Revolutionary Court, Awad Hamed al-Bandar, was denied by a federal appeals court Friday night. Al-Bandar also faces execution. The Justice Department argued in that case that U.S. courts have no jurisdiction to interfere with the judicial process of another country.

Al-Bandar argued that his trial violated his rights under the U.S. Constitution but Justice countered that foreigners being tried in foreign courts are not protected by the U.S. Constitution.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061230/ap_on_go_ot/saddam_...



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