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National Briefing / Washington, D.c.

Judge orders detainee's release

September 26, 2009|Times Wire Reports

A federal judge has ordered the release of a Kuwaiti man held at Guantanamo Bay and rebuked the U.S. government, saying it relied on scant evidence, dubious witnesses and coerced confessions to hold him for more than seven years.

In a newly declassified opinion, U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly said that government attorneys presented a "surprisingly bare" record during hearings last month to oppose Fouad Rabiah's request for release from the U.S. naval detention facility in Cuba.

She said the aviation engineer was being held almost exclusively on confessions that were obtained through abusive techniques and that his own interrogators repeatedly concluded were not believable.

Rabiah, who was sent to the prison in 2002, is the 30th Guantanamo detainee to be ordered released by a federal judge who has reviewed evidence. Seven have been denied freedom after a judge determined the evidence suggested they supported terrorism.

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