DALLAS — Feb. 5, 2015 — Representatives from Muslim Legal Fund of America are pleased to learn that Dr. Sami Al-Arian was safely deported from the U.S. to Turkey last night. This move marks the end of 12 years of government persecution, during which federal prosecutors unsuccessfully attempted to characterize Dr. Al-Arian’s First Amendment activities advocating for Palestinian human rights as material support for terrorism.
MLFA funded the legal fees and expenses associated with Dr. Al-Arian’s voluntary deportation proceedings to ensure a fair and smooth transition and to safeguard his legal rights during the process. Khalil Meek, Executive Director of MLFA, said the Fund and its supporters appreciate the work of attorneys Ira Kurzban and John Pratt for making Dr. Al-Arian’s transition successful.
“We’re honored to have been able to fund the defense of Dr. Al-Arian’s legal rights during his voluntary deportation,” said Meek. “We pray that he can finally find the peace and freedom in his new home that he was denied in the U.S.”
In a statement released this morning, Dr. Al-Arian thanked his trial attorneys, Linda Moreno and the late Bill Moffitt, as well as attorney Jonathan Turley, who successfully advocated for the government to drop all remaining charges against Dr. Al-Arian. He also thanked attorneys Ira Kurzban and John Pratt for “smoothing the way for this next phase of our lives.”
Meek added that everyone at MLFA thanks the donors, volunteers, supporters and community leaders who make it possible to fund the legal defense of Muslims’ civil liberties and rights in America.
Muslim Legal Fund of America is a national charity that funds legal work and programs to defend Muslims against injustice in American courtrooms, prisons and communities. Established in 2001, MLFA has defending freedom of speech, association, religion, the right to a fair trial and other constitutional rights.
To learn more about MLFA, visit https://www.mlfa.org.