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DOJ data challenges Bush claims on post-9/11 terror convictions

[JURIST] A Washington Post examination of US Department of Justice terror prosecutions to appear in the paper's Sunday edition shows very little progress in identifying and convicting terrorists since September 11, 2001. In contrast to President Bush's recent claims that federal terror investigations under the Patriot Act have resulted in charges against some 400 people and more than 200 convictions [JURIST report], the newspaper says that DOJ records show that only 39 of over 330 terrorism investigations [list] led to a conviction of a crime related to terrorism or national security, and that only 14 of the 39 people convicted had links to al-Qaeda. Approximately 180 suspects had no demonstrated connection to any terrorist group. Most convictions were for making false statements and violating immigration law, and average sentencing has been far from harsh, with an median term of imprisonment of 11 months. The Washington Post has more. NYU's Center for Law and Security has additional statistical analysis [PDF], as well as commentary [PDF].

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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