US judge won't order Benghazi defendant returned to Libya

AP News
Posted: Feb 02, 2016 7:20 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge has denied a defense request to send a Libyan man charged in the 2012 Benghazi attacks back to his home country.

Ahmed Abu Khattala is awaiting trial in federal court in Washington following his capture by U.S. special forces nearly two years ago.

His lawyers had asked that he be returned to Libya as a sanction for what they said were unconstitutional practices in arresting and interrogating him.

But U.S. District Judge Christopher R. Cooper rejected that request in an order Tuesday.

He said that even if Abu Khattala's legal arguments were correct, the proper remedy would be the exclusion of evidence — and not his return to Libya.

Cooper also rejected a separate defense request that he order federal prosecutors to forgo seeking the death penalty.