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Padilla competent to stand trial: US Bureau of Prisons

[JURIST] A US Bureau of Prisons [official website] evaluation has concluded that alleged terrorist Jose Padilla [BBC profile; JURIST news archive] is competent to stand trial. Previous evaluations of Padilla [JURIST report] by a psychiatrist and clinical psychologist suggested that he is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder as a result of his years in detention in a US naval brig as an "enemy combatant" [JURIST news archive], affecting his ability to assist his lawyers in preparing his defense. The latest evaluation, included in court documents filed Friday, however, indicates that Padilla understands the court proceedings and can communicate with his lawyers.

Padilla, a US citizen initially suspected of planning to set off a radioactive "dirty bomb" [NRC factsheet] in the United States and classified in 2002 as an enemy combatant subject to indefinite detention, was indicted [JURIST report] in late 2005 on unrelated terrorism charges. He was transferred to civilian custody [JURIST report] in January of last year and has pleaded not guilty [JURIST report]. AP has more.

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