Terror Trial Location Choice Close in Sept. 11 Case
“We have been working on it and I think we’re close to a decision,” Holder told reporters in Washington today.
Holder and President Barack Obama announced last year a plan to try Mohammed and four alleged co-conspirators in federal court in New York about a quarter-mile from where the World Trade Center towers stood. The administration began reconsidering that decision after New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg in January said he wanted the trial moved.
In April, Holder said the administration was still considering New York City as a site for a trial and that other locations were under review as well. At the time, Holder said the administration hadn’t decided whether to hold the trial before a military commission or in a civilian court.
Holder’s remarks today came in response to questions at a brief news conference after meetings with Canadian officials on cross-border crime.
Human Rights Watch, an international advocacy group, is running television commercials in New York City taxicabs featuring residents explaining why they think the trial should be held in the city.
In response to Holder’s comments, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, a New York Democrat, said in a statement: “The trial should not and will not be in New York.” Representative Peter King, a New York Republican, issued a statement urging the attorney general to try the suspects in a military commission at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Bloomberg originally supported a trial in Manhattan. In January, he said he wanted the trial moved, citing concerns about costs and disruptions to traffic and commerce. The New York mayor is the founder and majority owner of Bloomberg News parent Bloomberg LP.
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