Holy Land Foundation - Not Guilty!

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Yesterday's Good News - is Today's "Bad News":

The Holy Land Foundation was found NOT GUILTY of "Funding Terrorism"
Justice? Not yet . . .

But that was yesterday. Today, "Bad News" - three jury members - "Changed their minds?" and the judge has declared a "mis-trial?"  .  .  .  (read the rest)

This was yesterday's GOOD NEWS:
THE PEACE AND JUSTICE FOUNDATION
11006 Veirs Mill Rd, STE L-15, PMB 298
Silver Spring, MD. 20902
Shawwal 1428 AH  (October 22, 2007)
I just received word that The Holy Land Foundation was found NOT GUILTY of "Funding Terrorism" - charges that represented the heart of the political indictment leveled by the Israeli-US governments, in a looong, protracted, very costly and very public trial! (Additional details will be forthcoming.)

The Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (and its leadership) were accused of funneling millions of dollars to Hamas for "terrorist operations" against Israel. The returned with a verdict on Oct. 18, after 19 days of deliberation, but it was sealed until today in order for all of the principles in the case to be present.

The United States designated Hamas a terrorist organization in 1995 and 1997, making it illegal to have financial dealings with the organization. Lawyers for the HLF argued that it was a legitimate humanitarian relief organization that provided urgently needed money for medical, social service and educational assistance to Palestinian families.

While this is a long overdue victory for the organization, its leadership and supporters, it did not come without a HEAVY PRICE!  Important lessons should be extracted from this, because the struggle continues.
El-Hajj Mauri' Saalakhan
Director of Operations
The Peace And Justice Foundation
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This is today's BAD NEWS:

THE PEACE AND JUSTICE FOUNDATION
Shawwal 1428 AH
(October 22, 2007)

CORRECTION
Re: The Holy Land Foundation Trial
Assalaamu Alaikum
(Greetings of Peace):
A short while ago, I sent out a release that was factually incorrect and MISLEADING. For this I apologize.
The alert was based on a release that I received from the Dallas TX chapter of CAIR. Within minutes after I sent out our release, however, I received a call from my brother in Islam, Dr. Imad ad-Dean Ahmad, of the Minaret of Freedom Institute, to alert me of the factual discrepancy. I appreciated this call, as I consider ACCURACY in the media (including advocacy media) to be very important!
Since then, I have had an opportunity to read two reports on what actually did happen in that federal courthouse in Dallas,Texas - and what happened is absolutely shocking!
One report can be found below. A more lengthy, in-depth report can found via the following link:
Last Thursday, the jury reportedly found THREE of the leading defendants (Mohammad El-Mezain, Mufid Abdulqader and Abdulrahman Odeh) innocent on MOST of the charges in the indictment, and deadlocked on the remaining counts. That decision was sealed after their deliberations until this morning's reading by the jury forewoman.
After the verdict was read, the jury was individually polled by U.S. District Judge Joe Fish. It was at this time that some of the jurors expressed disagreement with the verdict (exonerating Mufid Abdulqader and Abdulrahman Odeh). Something happened between Thursday and today. The question is, what?
It is inconceiveable, in this commentator's estimation, that a jury forewoman would have made such a mistake - especially in a trial of this magnitude. What happened? Was the jury sequestered? (If not, why not?) If it was sequestered, did anything else happen during this four day period that may have resulted in illegal jury tampering, after the fact?!
THESE ARE QUESTIONS THAT MUST BE RAISED!
As expected, the prosecution has already announced its intent to retry all defendants on any and all counts that the jury could not reach a unanimous decision on.
The struggle continues... (And as we can see, anything is possible.)
El-Hajj Mauri' Saalakhan
Director of Operations
The Peace And Justice Foundation
_____________________

Mistrial Declared in Muslim Charity Case

Judge Declares Mistrial for Most Defendants in Muslim Charity Trial

By DAVID KOENIG - The Associated Press

DALLAS
A judge declared a mistrial Monday for most former leaders of a Muslim charity accused of funding terrorism, after chaos broke out in the court when three jurors disputed the verdict that had been announced.
One of the defendants, former Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development Chairman Mohammed El-Mezain, was acquitted of most charges.
The outcome came about an hour after a confusing scene in the courtroom, in which three former leaders of the group were initially found not guilty. But then when jurors were polled, three of them said those verdicts were read incorrectly.
Judge Joe A. Fish sent the jury back to resolve the differences, but after about an hour, Fish said he received a note from the jury saying 11 of 12 felt further deliberations will not lead them to reach a unanimous decision.
The jury forewoman said she was surprised by the three jurors' actions. "When we voted, there was no issue in the vote," she said. "No one spoke up any different. I really don't understand where it is coming from."
In all, five former Holy Land leaders and the group were accused of providing aid to the Middle Eastern militant group Hamas. The U.S. government designated Hamas a terrorist group in 1995 and again in 1997, making financial transactions with the group illegal.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
DALLAS (AP) A judge declared a mistrial Monday for most former leaders of a Muslim charity accused of funding terrorism, after chaos broke out in the court when three jurors disputed the verdict that had been announced.
One of the defendants, former Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development Chairman Mohammed El-Mezain, was acquitted of most charges.


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