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Sept. 11 detainees move forward with abuse lawsuit

[JURIST] Six non-US citizens who were arrested and detained on visa violations as "persons of interest" in terror investigations after the Sept. 11 attacks return to the United States this week to give depositions in a lawsuit filed against detention guards [JURIST report] and top government officials. The lawsuit brings allegations of abuse by guards in the Brooklyn detention center where they were held and claims that they were deprived of their due process rights because of their national origin or religion. The six were eventually deported after being cleared of any terrorist involvement. Defendants in the lawsuit also include former US Attorney General John Ashcroft [official profile] and FBI director Robert Mueller III [official profile]. Since the six men filed the lawsuit, the US Justice Department uncovered widespread abuse at the detention center [DOJ report; JURIST report] and other issues in immigrant detentions, leading to the discipline of several guards. Four of the individuals are from Egypt, one is from Pakistan, and the other is from London, and all are under strict conditions by the US government that they remain in the constant custody of federal marshals without access to the telephone during their return to the United States. Monday's New York Times has more.

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