Members of the Muslim community were angered yesterday by news that Rabih Haddad was moved by the U.S. Marshals Service from the Monroe County Jail Friday, where he was being held by the Immigration and Naturalization Service on charges of an expired visa.
Lou Stock, of the U.S. Marshals Service, which is currently holding Haddad at an undisclosed location, confirmed that Haddad will soon be transferred to Chicago, but declined to comment on any details of the case.
Nazih Hassan, vice president of the Muslim Community Association of Ann Arbor and a close friend of Haddad”s, said it is most likely that Haddad will be transferred to Chicago for a possible closed appearance in front of a grand jury.
Haddad, co-founder of the Global Relief Foundation, an Islamic charity with suspected terrorist ties, was first taken into custody by INS on Dec. 14.
Immigration Judge Elizabeth Hacker denied bond for Haddad at the two bond hearings he has already had. At Haddad”s last hearing in Detroit on Jan. 2, Haddad supporters were kept 20 feet away from the courthouse by police.
Hacker”s denial of bail created some rancor within the Muslim community, many of whose members feel that Haddad, a husband and father, should have received bond.
“It just makes me wonder what happened to due process,” said Engineering junior Omar Khalil, a member of the Muslim Student Association.
Khalil added that if there is reasonable evidence that Haddad is guilty of a crime, he should have bail and a trial date set, but if he is not, then he should be released immediately.
“If people have a right to a speedy trial, that is definitely not the case here,” LSA sophomore Irfan Shuttari said.
In order to clear up misunderstandings that students may have about Haddad”s case and the controversy surrounding it, the Students Allied for Freedom and Equality group will be hosting a symposium tomorrow night at 7:30. Representative Lynn Rivers (D-Ann Arbor) and the president of Michigan chapter of The American Civil Liberties Union, Mike Steinberg, will be hosting the event.