WASHINGTON — A federal appeals court yesterday overturned an order releasing a Yemeni detainee from Guantanamo Bay and ruled that circumstantial evidence of terrorist ties can be enough to keep a prisoner.
“We consistently have found such circumstantial evidence damning,’’ the appeals court ruling said. (File photo)Government attorneys argued that Hussain Salem Mohammad Almerfedi stayed at an Al Qaeda-affiliated guesthouse based on the testimony of another Guantanamo detainee. A lower court judge found the testimony unreliable and ordered Almerfedi released, but the US Circuit Court of Appeals said the judge erred in that conclusion.
The circumstances of Almerfedi’s capture were not clearly explained in court records. He was apprehended in Tehran, Iran, after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Iranian officials turned him over to Afghan authorities in March 2002 in a prisoner exchange. In May 2003, US forces moved him to Guantanamo Bay, where he has remained since.
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