We publish below an article from Fight Back! News giving an update on the trial of Rasmea Odeh.
May 29 — Rasmea Odeh, a Palestinian American organizer from Chicago, appeared in U.S. District Court here for a status hearing, May 28, along with her new attorney, Michael Deutsch of the People’s Law Office.
Deutsch filed an official appearance as Odeh’s representative and was granted a continuance on her trial until Oct. 21. Judge Paul Borman also ruled that the deadline for pre-trial motions had passed, and seemed reluctant to budge on this issue, but Deutsch stated afterward, “As the case develops, hopefully, he’ll be more flexible.”
Odeh is being charged with Unlawful Procurement of Naturalization, but strongly asserts her innocence. Deutsch, who has represented political activists and victims of police and government civil rights violations since 1970, was pleased with the ruling for a continuance and has begun working on a strategy for the defense.
The prosecution was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Tukel, the Chief of the National Security Unit.
The Rasmea Defense Committee, since Odeh’s arrest and release on bond last October, has been demanding that the U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Michigan, Barbara McQuade, immediately drop the charges.
Rania Shkairat, a member of the Rasmea Defense Committee in Chicago, said, “We are extremely happy that such a prominent attorney as Michael Deutsch is on the case and that we now have more time to continue our organizing to pressure the government to drop the charge. Rasmea is a wonderful role model for women like me who have dedicated their lives to social justice, and we will do everything in our power to clear her name.”
Mick Kelly, of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression, urges activists to check the United States Palestinian Community Network (uspcn.org) and the Committee to Stop FBI Repression (stopfbi.net) websites for updates and action steps.