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Former Detroit terror suspect files civil rights lawsuit against federal officials

[JURIST] Former terrorist suspect Karim Koubriti, a Moroccan national whose 2003 convictions for document fraud and conspiracy to aid terrorists were later overturned [JURIST report] by a US federal judge, filed a $9 million lawsuit in federal court Thursday against former federal prosecutor Richard Convertino, former federal security officer Harry Smith, and FBI agent Michael Thomas, alleging they violated his civil rights in their handling of his case. All three federal officials aided in the case against Koubriti, who was accused [indictment, PDF] of establishing a terrorist "sleeper cell" in Detroit [Wikipedia backgrounder]. The conviction was later overturned and Koubriti released [JURIST report] when the US Department of Justice agreed [JURIST report] that Convertino was not forthcoming with evidence [JURIST report] that would have benefited Koubriti and his three co-defendants. Convertino and Smith were indicted [JURIST report] last year for obstructing justice and lying to judges in connection with the case. AP has more.

Earlier this year, a federal judge ruled [JURIST report] that Koubriti could also sue a county in Detroit for supposed abuse while he was in jail. Koubriti has alleged that he was unnecessarily strip searched, denied exercise, and isolated for 23 hours a day during his three years in the Wayne County, Michigan jail [official website]. Meanwhile, the US government is working to retry Koubriti on insurance fraud charges.

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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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