Mohamed is one of the plaintiffs in the San Francisco Case. All are current or former prisoners who allege that aviation contractor Jeppersen Dataplan, Inc. helped run the CIA's torture" target="external">secret fleet of planes that ferried them on a rendition to torture. The Justice Department has tried to strike out the case, without a hearing of the facts, on the grounds of state secrets. (Jeppesen has previously declined to comment in detail on the case although it made clear that, though it provides aviation support services, it is not directly responsible for the flights it handles.)
The White House is already in the spotlight over Mohamed's case. In London, UK, last week, the British High Court invoked the lofty principles "law, free speech and democratic accountability" to appeal to the U.S. Government to allow the release of a summary of 42 documents that originated from U.S. intelligence and which might provide, they said, "powerful evidence" of a long kept secret that might help prove that Mohamed's astonishing claims of mistreatment are true.
Binyam's case is urgent, especially because he is on hunger strike. According to Lt. Col Yvonne Bradley, his military lawyer, Mohamed he has lost more than 50 pounds in weight. When Bradley last saw him a couple of weeks ago, his arms, she said, stuck out of his 6 foot body "like little thin twigs."
Although previously accused by U.S. authorities of plotting a terror attack on American soil, including an allegation now withdrawn that he conspired to explode a radioactive so-called 'dirty bomb', Mohamed is currently not charged with any crime. His former military prosecutor declared a month ago he presented no threat to either America or the UK.
Mohamed's case, in its detail, seems to not only trace all the controversial parts of the post-9/11 detention system, but also to sum up the dilemma of how justice and the on-going terrorist threat should be dealt with:
It was about 10 p.m. local time on July 21, 2002, when the men in black ski masks arrived to collect him from where he sat at Islamabad Airport. They began by stripping him naked. They put him in a nappy and a tracksuit, blindfold him and tape a mask across his mouth, he later told his lawyer.
They were a CIA para-military team; which came to scoop him up and place him on one executive jet used by the American spy agency to "render" terrorist suspects to and from jail cells across the world. In Mohamed's case, his destination where he arrived at 3:43 a.m. the following morning was the Moroccan capital of Rabat, Mohamed says.
Though never confirmed officially by the U.S., evidence that verified this "rendition" to Morocco came from the flight logs of the now notorious Gulfstream jet involved and which matched the exact details of Mohamed's testimony of being spirited away. But it has always been much harder to assess the truth of his account of appalling torture that he said occurred both in Pakistan before his transfer and in Morocco soon after.