West: Terror Suspect al-Libi Knows He Can 'Shut Up'

Wednesday, 16 Oct 2013 12:55 PM

By Wanda Carruthers

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Captured terror suspect Abu Anas al-Libi knows he can "shut up," as he will be treated like a U.S. citizen in a U.S. court, former Rep. Allen West complained Wednesday.

"You're treating him like a common criminal. Now he knows he can plead not-guilty. He can shut up," West, a former Army lieutenant colonel, told Fox & Friends.

"He's been lawyered-up. And, he's going to get all of the requisite rights and privileges of the Constitution, like he was an American citizen," West said about al-Libi, who has spent a decade on the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorist list in connection with the 1998 bombings of U.S. embassies in Libya and Tanzania.

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At issue is the decision by the administration of President Barack Obama to bring the suspect to the U.S. and try him in a court of law. Al-Libi pleaded not guilty to terrorism charges in a New York City court Tuesday.

West said the nation would be "losing the access to critical intelligence information" by bringing al-Libi to the United States. Under George W. Bush, captured terror suspects were sent to the military prison at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba for interrogation. However, Obama has made it clear he wants the facility closed.

Bringing al-Libi to the United States also negates information he may have shared in the weeks he was held on a U.S. Navy ship after his capture in Tripoli, Libya, on Oct. 5.

"Anything that he said on the ship, you're not going to be able to use that in a court of law because quote, unquote, he was not read his Miranda rights. So, it's not going to be admissible," West said.

"These are all the legal machinations that are going to be played. And, the games will be played that will allow him to skirt our system," West said.

He said the administration is sending a "confusing message," adding the action enables the terrorist suspect's attorneys to question whether he should have been captured.

"Now we have this instance where they're going to say he shouldn't even have been apprehended. It was done illegally.

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"Is this a war against Islamic terrorism, or is this just some type of criminal action? That's the confusing message that's coming from this administration," West said.

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