Tag Archives: solitary confinement

No Separate Justice: Advocates & Families Impacted by the “War on Terror” Launch New Campaign Challenging Prosecutorial Overreach & Unjust Incarceration

No Separate Justice: Advocates & Families Impacted by the “War on Terror” Launch New Campaign Challenging Prosecutorial Overreach & Unjust Incarceration

[NEW YORK, NY]   On January 7, 2014, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), Educators for Civil Liberties, CUNY School of Law’s Creating Law Enforcement Accountability & Responsibility (CLEAR) Project, and Amnesty International USA will host a panel discussion to launch  “No Separate Justice: A Post-9/11 Domestic Human Rights Campaign.” This new campaign aims to shed light on and end a pattern of human rights and civil liberties abuses in “War on Terror” cases in the criminal justice system.

A focal point of this new effort will be monthly vigils held outside the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) in lower Manhattan, a federal detention center where people accused of terrorism-related offenses have been held in solitary confinement for years, even before they have been tried.

The panel will include discussion of the case of Syed Fahad Hashmi, who is currently serving a 15-year sentence at the federal “supermax” prison in Colorado on material support charges, after three years of pre-trial solitary confinement and Special Administrative Measures at the MCC in New York. It will highlight efforts by the Center for Constitutional Rights and allies to challenge Fahad’s inhumane conditions of confinement, and show how Fahad’s treatment is part of a pattern of rights violations in other “War on Terror” cases, based on extensive research into terrorism prosecutions. Family members of other federal terrorism prisoners will also participate on the panel.

This January 7 campaign-launch event dovetails with a year-long series, “America After 9/11” – a collaboration between The Nation and Educators for Civil Liberties – which features monthly articles examining facets of the domestic “War on Terror.”



Liliana Segura
Specializing in the prison industrial complex and harsh sentencing Liliana is a former editor at The Nation magazine and is currently a founding partner at Glenn Greenwald’s new public service journalism venture, First Look.


Pardiss Kebriaei
Pardiss is a Senior Staff Attorney at the Center Constitutional Rights, which she joined in 2007. Her work focuses on challenging government abuses post-9/11, including in the areas of “targeted killing“ and unjust detentions at Guantanamo and in the federal system. Pardiss represents Fahad Hashmi.


Tamer Mehanna

Tamer’s brother, Tarek Mehanna, was convicted under broad allegations of “material support to terrorists” for 1st amendment protected activities, and is currently imprisoned at the Federal Communications Management Unit in Terre Haute, IN.

Sonali Sadequee

Sonali’s brother, Ehsanul “Shifa” Sadequee, was held for three years in pre-trial solitary confinement while charged under the “material support” statute and is currently incarcerated at the Federal Communications Management Unit in Terre Haute, IN. As a member of the Sadequee family and Free Shifa Campaign, Sonali organizes and speaks publicly to expose the inherent injustices of the War on Terror and the prison complex.

Sarah Khasawinah

Sarah is a PhD candidate at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is a friend of the Abu-Ali family and will be speaking on behalf of Ahmed Abu-Ali (sentenced to life in prison based on a confession he maintains was coerced through torture while in a Saudi prison). Since 2005 Ahmed has been in held in solitary confinement. He is currently at the federal “supermax” prison in Florence, CO.

Tarek Ismail

As a fellow at Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute Tarek develops research and policy at the intersection of human rights and U.S. counterterrorism policies, with a particular focus on issues affecting Muslim, Arab, Middle Eastern, and South Asian communities in the United States, including racial profiling, selective prosecution, and the use of informants and sting operations.

Faisal Hashmi

Co-founder of the Muslim Justice Initiative. Faisal’s brother, Fahad, was accused of providing material support to Al-Qaeda. He is currently being held in solitary confinement at the Federal “Supermax” Prison, ADX-Florence, Colorado.

WHAT: Panel Discussion & Launch Event
WHEN: Tuesday, January 7, 2014 | 7:00pm-9:00pm
WHERE: Judson Memorial Church | 55 Washington Square South, New York 10012
INFO: Facebook RSVP | media RSVP andy@sparrowmedia.net

To arrange an interview with any of the speakers & presenters please email or text Andy Stepanian at andy@sparrowmedia.net or 631.291.3010

Help The Alyona Show Find the Congressman at the Heart of Tim DeChristopher’s Isolation

Help The Alyona Show Find the Congressman at the Heart of Tim DeChristopher’s Isolation

Tim DeChristopher was thrown into the  isolation of the Secure Housing Unit or SHU reportedly because one angry Congressman complained about a letter DeChristopher sent while in low security custody in the Federal Bureau of Prisons.You can read the letter here…While our followers likely know about imprisoned environmental activist Tim DeChristopher, many do not know that he recently spent 3 weeks in isolation because an anonymous member of congress wrote a letter to the FBOP complaining about his correspondence.   For additional background on what transpired over those three weeks we encourage you to read Jeff Goodell’s comprehensive account for Rolling Stone.  Last night we were contacted by the producers of RT America’s The Alyona Show who ran a segment on Tim’s isolation.  They told us about their efforts to determine the identity of the congressperson responsible for Tim’s transfer to an isolated unit, read below to find out how you can help them, we encourage everyone reading this to get involved with their effort.

DeChristopher Letter

DeChristopher merely “threatened” to return a corporate donor’s money and wage a campaign against her/him because he found out the donor was outsourcing jobs. He did not pose a threat to anyone. Yet for exercising free speech, he was “thrown in the hole”.

Human rights groups have compared the experience of being in the SHU to torture. After a visit, DeChristopher’s lawyer said that the normally upbeat man looked visibly disturbed after just three weeks.

The FBOP throwing prisoners in isolation without due process isn’t an irregular occurrence to be sure, but in this case, it’s particularly disturbing that it came as a result of political pressure.

Although DeChristopher is out of isolation now, we’re still keen on finding out which Congressperson thought it was a good idea to put him there in the first place. So we’re asking you, the reader, to help us. …By asking, of course.

Its true that reaching out to 435 Congresspeople is a task of biblical proportions. So it would be particularly helpful if voters with representatives on the House judiciary subcommittee on crime, terrorism and homeland security reached out. The panel is responsible for overseeing the Bureau of Prisons, after all. So feel free to ask them to investigate the matter, if they are not responsible.

Recommended directions:

1.Get in touch with your Congressperson by calling his/her office. [Don’t know how to contact your congress person?  Simply click HERE & type in your zip code]  Identify yourself as a constituent (and please, actually be one!) then inform the staffer that you are calling in response to a television program. Say that you are inquiring whether or not the Congressman contacted the Bureau of Prisons about taking punitive action, including recommending isolation, in response to a letter he sent on March 5.

You may not receive a response right away. Congressional staffers are quite busy. Be persistent. Explain to who you speak to that if you don’t receive a definitive “no” response, the lack of an answer could be construed as a passive admission. Most importantly, stress that you don’t want to hold the Congressman unfairly responsible for this. Eventually, you’ll speak to a staffer.

Once you finally speak to a staffer who works on the subcommittee issues, inquire who it is you’re talking to. Note who you are speaking to and the time of the conversation. Then ask them directly on the record: did your boss contact BOP about DeChristopher’s letter? Did he/she request that punitive measures be taken against Tim DeChristopher, including isolation?

If you don’t receive a definitive answer, ask the staffer to verify for you.

If the staffer actually says yes…don’t judge. Politely ask for an explanation.

Questions for Congresspeople on subcommittee on crime, terrorism and homeland security:

1. Does the Congressperson plan on raising the issue of isolation without due process in a subcommittee hearing?

2. If so, when?

3. What is Rep. X’s position on the detention of Tim DeChristopher?

Once you receive answers about DeChristopher’s story and the subcommittee member’s position on putting prisoners in isolation without due process…reach out to us! [RT America in Washington, DC by emailing TASProducer@Gmail.com ]  We will keep our viewers updated on the situation as responses roll in.

Subcommittee members:
Jim Sensenbrenner, Chairman (R-Wisconsin), Bobby Scott, Ranking Member (D-Virginia), Louie Gohmert, Vice Chair (R-Texas), Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee), Boob Goodlatte (R-Virginia), Hank Johnson (D-Georgia), Dan Lungren (R-California), Pedro Pierluisi (D-Puerto Rico), Randy Forbes (R-Virginia), Judy Chu (D-California), Ted Poe (R-Texas), Ted Deutch (D-Florida), Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-Texas), Tim Griffin (R-Arkansas), Mike Quigley (D-Illinois), Tom Marino (R-Pennsylvania), Trey Gowdy (R- South Carolina), Sandy Adams (R-Florida), Mark Amodei (R-Nevada)