The court fight over Hamid Hayat’s terror conviction is evolving into a reminder of the challenges Muslim Americans faced after the Sept. 11 attacks and the creation of the government’s secret “no-fly list.”
For the second consecutive day Tuesday, a witness from Lodi’s Muslim American community broke down on the witness stand in federal court while recalling how authorities blocked him from returning home to the United States.
Hayat’s lawyers maintain that while their client was in Pakistan from 2003 to 2004 arranging for his marriage, he was never out of sight of friends or family long enough to have gone to a terror training camp, as the government charges.
Ismail testified that he saw his friend virtually every day, and watched movies with him, played PlayStation games and gossiped about potential brides. Hayat was never gone more long enough to have traveled to a camp for training, Ismail said.
“That’s not possible at all,” he testified.