GITMO

Detainee Pleads Not Guilty

The first prisoner from Guantanamo Bay to set foot on American soil pleaded not guilty to 268 counts of murder, conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction, and other grisly crimes Tuesday night. Ahmed Ghailani was asked by the judge if he wanted to be read the entirety of the “big fat indictment” against him. Ghailani said no, and pleaded not guilty. The case is a big test for President Obama’s plan to close down the prison by transferring inmates to U.S. soil to be tried, or, in some cases, held indefinitely without charges. Ghailani is staying in New York’s Metropolitan Correctional Center, which also counts alleged Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff among its list of 750 inmates. Ghailani was indicted for the bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998, which killed 228 people, and has been in Guantanamo since 2006. The White House would not say if he would be released if cleared of charges in court.