From Academic Kids

José Padilla (also known as Abdullah al-Muhajir) (born October 18, 1970) is accused of being a terrorist by the United States government. He is currently being detained without charge in a South Carolina military prison under orders of President George W. Bush.

Missing image
José Padilla's Florida driver's license photo

The U.S. administration describes him as an illegal enemy combatant however this is not a legal definition because he has not been in front of a "competent [military] tribunal", as stipulated under Article 5 of the Third Geneva Convention, to ascertain if he is an enemy combatant who has broken the laws of war.

Born in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, Padilla became a gang member after moving to Chicago, Illinois, and was arrested several times. During his gang years, he maintained several aliases, such as José Rivera, José Alicea, José Hernandez and José Ortiz. After serving his last jail sentence, he converted to Islam. He went to the Masjid Al-Iman mosque in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with Adham Amin Hassoun, who at that time was the registered agent for Benevolence International Foundation, a charity which U.S. investigators have accused of funding terrorist activities. Padilla and Hassoun became friends. U.S. authorities accuse Hassoun of consorting with radical Islamic fundamentalists, possibly including Al-Qaida. Hassoun was arrested in 2002 for overstaying his visa. Template:Ref

Padilla traveled to Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. On his return, he was arrested by federal agents at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport on May 8, 2002 and held as material witness on the warrant issued in New York State about the 2001 9/11 attacks. On June 9, 2002 President Bush issued an order to Secretary Rumsfeld to detain Padilla as an "enemy combatant". The order legally justified the detention by leaning on the AUMF which authorized the President to "...use all necessary force against ... such nations, organizations, or persons." and in the opinion of the administration a U.S. citizen can be an enemy combatant (This was decided by the United States Supreme Court in the case of ex parte Quirin)Template:Ref. Padilla is currently being detained without charge in a naval brig at Hanahan in South Carolina and is accused by the Bush Administration of being an illegal enemy combatant and a nuclear terrorist planning to set off a dirty bomb. Template:Ref

On December 18, 2003, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals declared that the Bush Administration lacked the authority to designate a U.S. citizen arrested on U.S. soil an "illegal enemy combatant" without clear congressional authorization (per 18 U.S.C. § 4001(a)); it consequently ordered the government to release him from military custody within thirty daysTemplate:Ref. However, the court has stayed the order pending appeal.

On February 20, 2004, the Supreme Court agreed to hear the government's appeal. The Supreme Court heard the case, Rumsfeld v. Padilla, in April 2004, but on June 28 it was thrown out on a technicality. The court declared that New York State, where the case was originally filed, was an improper venue and that the case should have been filed in South Carolina, where Padilla was being held.

On February 28, 2005, in Spartanburg, South Carolina, U.S. District Judge Henry Floyd ordered the Bush administration to either charge Padilla or release himTemplate:Ref. He relied on the Supreme Court's ruling in the parallel enemy combatant case of Yaser Hamdi (Hamdi v. Rumsfeld), in which the majority decision declared a "state of war is not a blank check for the president when it comes to the rights of the nation's citizens."

Padilla and John Doe 2

Several websites including has pointed to the uncanny resemblance between Padilla and police sketches of an Oklahoma City Bombing suspect known as "John Doe Two." These sites claim he was likely a CIA agent and that he is being held as a enemy cabatent is part of a coverup of his involvement in the Oklahoma City bombings while a CIA agant. [1] (

External links


see Wikipedia:Footnote3
  1. Template:NoteFeds arrest man linked to 'dirty bomb' suspect ( June 15, 2002 CNN MIAMI, Florida (CNN) -- Federal officials in Miami told CNN Saturday they had arrested a south Florida Muslim activist with ties to "dirty bomb" suspect Jose Padilla.
  2. Template:Note US Congress' joint resolution of September 18, 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force ("AUMF") (; public law 107-40, 115 Stat. 224
  3. Template:Note Authorization for Use of Military Force: Padilla v. Bush: Jose Padilla under the Joint Resolution ( The Syracuse Journal of International Law and Commerce, issued by the Syracuse Collage of Law
  4. Template:Note
  5. Template:Note Appeals Court Says Bush Can't Hold U.S. Citizen ( Published on Thursday, December 18, 2003 by Reuters
  6. Template:Note Judge Says Terror Suspect Can't Be Held as an Enemy Combatant ( The New York Times March 1, 2005

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