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Moussaoui constitutional rights violated in terror prosecution: lawyers

[JURIST] Lawyers for Zacarias Moussaoui [JURIST news archive] said their client's guilty plea and life prison sentence should be overturned because his constitutional rights were violated, according to court papers released Friday. The 207-page brief filed in the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit [official website] asks that Moussaoui's guilty plea be revoked or that Moussaoui be re-sentenced, saying that Moussaoui faced an "unconstitutional choice" between entering a guilty plea or facing a "fundamentally unfair trial." The federal government's reply brief has not yet been filed.

Moussaoui pleaded guilty [JURIST report] in April 2005 to six conspiracy charges [indictment] in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks, including conspiracy to commit acts of terrorism transcending national boundaries, conspiracy to destroy aircraft and conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction. He received a life sentence [JURIST report] last year after one juror refused to agree to the death penalty [JURIST report]. He is currently serving his life sentence in the federal Supermax prison in Colorado. The Washington Post has more.

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