CaribWorldNews, NEW YORK, NY, Weds. Oct. 7, 2009: The attorneys for Guyanese-born terror accused, Russell Defreitas, want all statements and items seized by investigors in the case to be suppressed, CaribWordlNews has learnt.
Defreitas along with three others, including a former member of the Parliament of Guyana, were arrested and charged in June 1, 2007 with plotting to blow up fuel tanks, terminal buildings and the web of fuel lines running beneath Kennedy International Airport.
Defreitas was a former cargo handler and is a 69-year-old naturalized American citizen who lived in Brooklyn at the time of his arrest.
But his attorneys are now contending that statements made by the Guyanese national at the time of his arrest along with items found at his home on Euclid Avenue in Brooklyn and at Roxanne Burnham Gardens in Georgetown, Guyana, were in violation of Defreitas` Fifth Amendment rights.
They want all such evidence suppressed for the June 1, 2010 trial.
`The 5th amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits a person from being compelled to be a witness against himself,` Defreitas` attorneys claim adding their client was not read his rights which makes any statements he made inadmissible.
`The burden is on the government to prove that Mr. Defreitas waived his rights,` they added. They also claim that his fourth amendment right was violated since he did not voluntarily consent to a right to search.
The government claims Defreitas waived his rights and agreed to speak to investigators voluntarily. But the Guyanese national now denies this.
Defreitas along with Abdul Kadir, a former mayor of Linden, Guyana and a onetime member of Parliament and Trinidadians Kareem Ibrahim and Abdel Nur have all been charged and jailed for the alleged terror plot.
If convicted, all four suspects could face life in prison.