Colorado Attorney General John Suthers returned this week end from
Having done business in
Let us remember, however, that it is Homaidan Al Turki that is on trial here and not
Sitting in the court room, I couldn’t help but wonder why A manikin dressed in traditional Saudi attire stood there for the entire trial. I was further astonished when 9-11 was mentioned several times, though indirectly, despite its highly prejudicial value. We also learned that two FBI agents and a translator were sent to
So, are the Saudis justified in questioning the fairness of the trial? Considering the above, as well as the fact that the alleged victim repeatedly denied any sexual assault despite being questioned 11 times by FBI agents and officials from her country’s embassy, only changing her statement a day before she got her immigration papers, one can understand why some people may be skeptical. As if that was not enough, Al Turki’s attorneys found twelve blatant errors during the trial which together stood in the way of Al Turki’s fair judgment – and the manikin was not one of them.
During the sentencing, Al Turki, who had no prior acts of violence and who was out on bail for over a year during his trial, was disallowed the opportunity to wear street clothes, an opportunity given to people convicted of more heinous crimes, and was forced to sit in the court room restrained in handcuffs, despite his attorney’s plea to the judge. In a highly charged political climate, and when our legal system stresses the appearance as well as the actuality of fairness in a trial, why were these things allowed to happen?