November 13th, 2009
10:33 AM ET

Morning Buzz: 9/11 alleged leader to be tried in NY

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/CRIME/11/13/khalid.sheikh.mohammed/story.khalid.sheikh.mohammed.gi.jpg caption="Khalid Sheikh Mohammed reportedly confessed to being the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks after being waterboarded." width=300 height=169]

Eliza Browning
AC360° Associate Producer

Attorney General Eric Holder will announce this morning that five Guantanamo Bay detainees with alleged ties to the 9/11 attacks will be transferred to New York to go on trial in civilian court, according to an Obama administration official. This means accused mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other detainees will be tried in a court house less than 10 blocks from Ground Zero, the site of the World Trade Center Attacks.

Meanwhile, we’re hearing reports about a major shakeup in the Obama administration. The White House's top counsel, Greg Craig, may resign today. Craig has come under criticism over the past few months. He was a key part of the President’s revamping of the U.S. policy on terrorism interrogations and detentions and he was at the center of the administration’s moves to release documents relating to the treatment of terror suspects under the Bush administration. Many of these decisions prompted quite a lot of backlash. Bob Bauer, who was general counsel for Obama during the presidential campaign, has agreed to take Craig’s place. We’ll dig deeper on what this means for the administration tonight.

We’re also looking into a story that involves journalism students from the Medill School at Northwestern University. Medill students have worked in tandem with the Innocence Project, an organization dedicated to exonerating wrongfully convicted people through DNA testing, for more than 10 years.

Since it was formed in 1999, the Medill Innocence Project has freed 11 people, five of whom were on death row. The Medill students believe they found proof that exonerates a man who has been behind bars for 31 years on a murder conviction. But prosecutors allege that the students paid witnesses for testimony that would help their case. The students deny the allegation. We’ll dig deeper on the case tonight and talk to students involved.

Charles Manson turned 75 this week. Ted Rowlands speaks to two people who serve as Manson’s conduits to the outside world. They even moved to Corcoran, Calif. to be near him. They share recordings of their phone calls with Manson and paint a picture of a man who’s spent nearly four decades behind bars for one of the most notorious crimes in U.S. history.

And we also learned this morning from Ed Lavandera that Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, the man charged with the shootings at Fort Hood Army Post last week, is paralyzed from the waist down. His lawyer is in a San Antonio Military Hospital, has severe pain in his hands and it doesn’t appear as if he’ll be able to walk in the future.

What else are you following this Friday, the 13th? Let us know and see you at 10 p.m. ET.

Filed under: Eliza Browning • The Buzz
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Tim Gibson

    Why would known terrorist be given the same rights as American citizens in a court? Do we pay for their defense as well, the taxpayers, the ones they wish to kill.

    November 13, 2009 at 12:33 pm |
  2. Carol

    I worry for the safety of the Federal Judge and Jurors. I wouldb't choose to be a juror in this trial because of the threat of coercion from terrorist sympathizers, and the time commitment to an anticipated lengthy trial, not to mention the news-media pursuit during and afterwards.

    November 13, 2009 at 12:28 pm |
  3. Michelle D. Fonthill .Ont

    The masterminds behind the plot of 9/11 are finally being brought to justice and it's about time that day was the most horrigble day for everyone who lost someone in that tragic day .

    Btw Congrats to John King on his upcoming new weekday show it will be a great additon to the lineup for sure !

    November 13, 2009 at 12:24 pm |
  4. Tom in Tennessee

    Score another for our department of injustice under Eric Holder. This is an insult to the families of the 9/11 victims and to the American people. This will be an absolute circus and allow this scum to game the system and result ultimately in putting Americans in danger.
    Ask the American people if they want this.

    November 13, 2009 at 11:13 am |
  5. Cindy

    These terrorist being tried in New York also means that their followers and ones who sympathize with them will now try to cause havoc in the U.S. because of this. Did Obama and his cronies think of that little scenario? That makes all of us in jeopardy because who knows where they may strike.

    This Craig thing is no secret. It's been rumored he was going to be kicked out for weeks. He will be replaced by Anita Dunns husband Bob Bauer.

    Hasan's lawyer just wants sympathy for him by releasing that he is paralyzed. I could care less. He killed 13 people and deserves to be tried and given the harshest sentence! He definitely doesn't need to get off easy just because of his condition.


    November 13, 2009 at 10:54 am |