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Bin Laden Spokesman Pleads Not Guilty in NYC

By Larry Neumeister and Tom Hays

Posted on 03/08/13 | News Source ABC News |

A senior al-Qaida leader and son-in-law of Osama bin Laden, captured in Jordan a week ago, pleaded not guilty Friday in a heavily secured New York courtroom to plotting against Americans before and immediately after the Sept. 11 attacks in his role as the terror network's top spokesman.

Bearded and balding, Sulaiman Abu Ghaith was escorted into the largest courtroom at the federal courthouse in Manhattan, where he entered the plea through a lawyer to one count of conspiracy to kill Americans in a case that marks a legal victory for President Barack Obama's administration.

Assistant U.S. Attorney John P. Cronan revealed that Abu Ghaith gave an "extensive post-arrest statement" that totaled 22 pages after he was arrested overseas the night of Feb. 28 and arrived in the U.S. March 1. The prosecutor said nothing about the contents of Abu Ghaith's statement.

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Read More: ABC News

Photo Caption: A Homeland Security vehicle sits in front of a federal court in New York on March 8, 2013, where Sulaiman Abu Ghaithwhere, a senior al-Qaida leader and son-in-law of Osama bin Laden, pleaded not guilty to plotting against Americans in his role as the terror network's top spokesman. The case marks a legal victory for the Obama administration, which has long sought to charge senior al-Qaida suspects in U.S. federal courts instead of holding them at the military detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Charging foreign terror suspects in federal courts was a top pledge by President Barack Obama shortly after he took office in 2009, aimed, in part, to close Guantanamo Bay. (AP Photo/Peter Morgan)


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