Military drops charges in 9/11 cases to clear way for civilian prosecution
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Press Release)–The Defense Department announced Friday that the convening authority for Military Commissions withdrew and dismissed the charges, without prejudice, against the five detainees charged in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
This action comes in light of the announcement by the attorney general of the United States that the Department of Justice intends to pursue a prosecution of Khalid Sheik Mohammed, Walid Bin Attash, Ramzi Bin al Shibh, Ali Abdul Aziz Ali and Mustafa Ahmed Adam al Hawsawi, in federal court in the Southern District of New York.
Given the determination that prosecution of these detainees will be pursued in federal court, it was appropriate to withdraw the pending military commission charges and dismiss them without prejudice. This action is a procedural step, which is part of a normal process, when an alternative forum is chosen.
The convening authority took a similar action May 29, 2009, when charges against Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani were withdrawn and dismissed without prejudice after a decision was made to pursue prosecution of Ghailani in federal court.
Preceding provided by U.S. Defense Department