Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Sokolow et al v. PLO: Suicide Bomber's Reeboks Explored in Terror Trial By NICK DIVITO

Suicide Bomber's Reeboks Explored in Terror Trial
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Courthouse News Service

 MANHATTAN (CN) - Amid data-driven testimony from a terrorism expert, a federal jury heard Wednesday about a 2002 suicide bomber who went "to Paradise with Reebok shoes."
     Sa'id Ramadan and his sneakers emerged as Israeli judge advocate Nick Kaufman testified about the convictions of various accomplices in six different attacks between 2001 and 2004 that killed dozens and injured hundreds.
     Kent Yalowitz, an attorney representing American families injured in those Jerusalem attacks during the Second Intifada, called Kaufman to the stand for the second day of what's expected to be a six-week trial against the Palestinian Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority.

Lead plaintiff attorney Kent Yalowitz  questions Israeli legal expert Nick Kaufman

     Kaufman said Ramadan had been driven on Jan. 22, 2002, to a busy intersection in downtown Jerusalem for his mission: shoot and kill as many civilians as possible.
     As he crouched in the back of the Isuzu, an M-16 machine gun in one hand and three magazines in his other, Ramadan complained that the new shoes he bought for the mission were too tight, according to the trial documents.
     That's when Mohammed Abdullah, one of the two men who drove him there, pulled off his shoes and handed them over."Go up to Paradise with Reebok shoes," Abdullah told the gunman, according to the court documents read by Kaufman.
     
"Go up to Paradise with Reebok shoes," Abdullah told the 
gunman, according to the court documents read by Kaufman.


Nitzana Darshan-Leitner  attorney for the Israeli plaintiffs  seated far left,
the assistant to the Palestinian Finance minster seated right, next to a PLO Ambassador

    The PLO was created in 1964, three years before Israel's war with Jordan, Egypt and Syria that led to military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza. The PA was formed in '90s as part of the Oslo Accords.
     U.S. District Judge George Davis is presiding over the trial before a jury of six women and six men, who will determine if the PLO and the PA bankrolled the operations and provided supplies to the terrorists.
     Yalowitz filed a $1 billion lawsuit nearly a decade ago. The lead plaintiff in the case, Mark Sokolow, is a lawyer who escaped the south tower of the World Trade Center during the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, only to later survive a bombing in Jerusalem.
     Sokolow and his family were among 150 injured on Jan. 27, 2002, when a woman named Yafa Idris arrived at a busy downtown street in Jerusalem and blew herself in the middle of the day. There was one fatality, an 81-year-old man.
     The Sokolows suffered "severe burns, shrapnel wounds, fractures and other serious injuries as a result of the explosion," according to the complaint.
   
Brian Hill attorney for the defendants speaking to judge

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