The 12 member jury deliberating the fate of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui has returned with a verdict of Guilty on all seven counts of attempted murder and assault charges. She faces life in prison.
Her defense attorney’s have already been preparing an appeal which they said they will be filing expeditiously.
Judge Richard Berman has scheduled sentencing on May 6th, 2010.
Dr. Aafia Siddiqui was charged in seven counts allegedly based on events that occurred at an Afghan National Police Compound in Ghazni, Afghanistan on July 17 and 18, 2008:
(1) attempting to kill United States nationals in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2332(b) (Count One);
(2) attempting to kill United States officers and employees in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1114 (Count Two);
(3) armed assault of United States officers and employees in
violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 111(b) (Count Three);
(4) discharging a firearm during a crime of violence in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 924(c) (Count Four);
and (5) assaulting United States officers and employees in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 111(a) (Counts Five through Seven).
“The charges stem from the defendant’s apprehension on July 17, 2008 by the ANP in Ghazni, Afghanistan. Upon being arrested, the ANP recovered a number of items from the defendant, certain of which were provided to the United States military. These items included a number of handwritten and pre-printed documents, women’s personal effects, various chemicals (certain of which tested positive for sodium cyanide), and a computer thumb drive which contained various electronic documents. Based in part on its review of these items, the United States military contacted the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) to assist in interviewing and identifying the individual whom the ANP had detained (later determined to be the defendant).”
“The following day, a team of United States military personnel and FBI agents (the “Interview Team”) traveled to the ANP Compound at which the defendant was held, in order to interview and identify her. Eventually the Interview Team was directed to a second floor room
at the ANP Compound. Unbeknownst to the Interview Team, the defendant was left unsecured in the room, behind a curtain that partitioned it. After the Interview Team entered the room, the
defendant grabbed one of the Team member’s (the “Warrant Officer”) M-4 rifle, and attempted to fire, and fired, it at members of the Interview Team. In response, the Warrant Officer shot the defendant, and she was subsequently subdued. During and immediately after this shooting, the defendant repeatedly screamed anti-American statements, including her desire to kill Americans. The Interview Team then brought the defendant to a military base, where her wounds were treated. The same day, two members of the Interview Team brought the defendant to another military base for medical treatment, and then to Bagram Airbase, where she remained until August 4, when she was transferred to this District.”
Jury returned a verdict saying it was not premeditated murder, however, it was an attempted murder. This will reduce maximum sentence from 40 years to 30 years.
Tina Foster, spokesperson for the family issued the following statement:
“Today marks the close of another sad chapter in the life of our
sister, Dr. Aafia Siddiqui. Today she was unjustly found guilty.
Though she was not charged with any terrorism-related offense, Judge
Berman permitted the prosecution’s witnesses to characterize our
sister as a terrorist — which, based on copious evidence, she clearly
is not. Today’s verdict is the result of many legal errors that
allowed the prosecution to build a case against our sister based on
hate, rather than fact. We believe that as a result, she was denied a
fair trial, and today’s verdict must be overturned on appeal.”