How Administration Officials Cried ‘Terrorism’ to Cover Up a Paperwork Error
This is why you want a public due process. The greater the secrecy in the process the greater the negative consequences for innocents caught up.
FBI agent Kevin Kelley was investigating Muslims in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2004 when he checked the wrong box on a terrorism form, erroneously placing Rahinah Ibrahim on the no-fly list….
At one point, Judge Alsup dismissed the case. A federal appeals court reinstated it in 2012, more than a year after Alsup tossed it. A month before Ibrahim’s trial, the judge said he learned the Kafkaesque truth. “I feel that I have been had by the government,” he said in a November pretrial conference.
Last week he laid it out all in his final order in the case, ruling for Ibrahim following a five-day, non-jury trial that was conducted largely behind closed doors in December.
At long last, the government has conceded that plaintiff poses no threat to air safety or national security and should never have been placed on the no-fly list. She got there by human error within the FBI. This too is conceded. This was no minor human error but an error with palpable impact, leading to the humiliation, cuffing, and incarceration of an innocent and incapacitated air traveler. That it was human error may seem hard to accept — the FBI agent filled out the nomination form in a way exactly opposite from the instructions on the form, a bureaucratic analogy to a surgeon amputating the wrong digit — human error, yes, but of considerable consequence. (.pdf)