Trial of Gitmo detainee charged with terrorism could decide constitutional protection

The trial of a Guantanamo Bay detainee charged with terrorism could help determine if constitutional protections apply to alleged members of Al Qaeda.

Abd al Hadi al Iraqi, 54, is set to appear in court Monday at Guantanamo Bay for pretrial proceedings, according to the Marine Corps Times. Hadi faces life in prison for allegedly ordering car bombings and suicide attacks that killed at least 16 U.S. and coalition force members in Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2003 and 2004.

One CIA detainee said that Hadi “had approximately 40 to 50 men under his command,” according to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s 2014 report on the CIA’s detention and interrogation practices.

But before the court can begin the work of determining Hadi’s innocence or guilt, it must first decide what rights he is entitled to. Hadi’s defense team filed a motion to “suppress out-of-court statements of the accused due to violation of rights against self-incrimination,” according to the Marine Corps Times. It’s not clear, however, if the military commission judging Hadi will agree that he has the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

A trial date has not been set.

Hadi, who was born in Iraq, was listed as the second-to-last person to remain in the CIA detention and interrogation program, according to the Senate report. Hadi was captured in late 2006 and interrogated by the CIA for five months.

“Although Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi was consistently assessed as being cooperative, interrogators believed he was withholding information on operational plots and the locations of high value targets,” according to the report. The CIA initially discussed using enhanced interrogation techniques against him, but eventually concluded there was “insufficient intelligence” to “justify the use of” enhanced methods.

The Department of Defense took custody of Hadi in April 2007 and sent him to Guantanamo.

Hadi is currently one of seven detainees at Guantanamo facing a military commission, and the only one not facing the death penalty, according to the Marine Corps Times.

Click for the story in the Marine Corps Times.