Judge deciding US-born Taliban fighter's lawsuit

AP News
Posted: Aug 30, 2012 4:18 PM
Judge deciding US-born Taliban fighter's lawsuit

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A judge is now considering whether the rights of American-born Taliban fighter John Walker Lindh are being violated because daily group prayers are banned at the Indiana prison where he's being held.

The government rested its case Thursday after a four-day trial in Indianapolis in Lindh's lawsuit. Lindh says the ban violates Muslim inmates' religious rights.

U.S. District Judge Jane Magnus Stinson didn't immediately rule, but gave both sides 75 days to submit final documents in the case.

Lindh says the prison policy violates a 1993 law that bars the government from curtailing religious expression without a compelling interest.

The government says the restrictions are necessary for security and religious fairness. The prison allows weekly religious gatherings.

Lindh pleaded guilty in 2002 to aiding the former Taliban government in Afghanistan.