Abdulmutallab interrogated for less than an hour; White House defends handling of terrorist case

by Byron York
Washington Examiner
1/24/2010

The White House is not disputing a report that FBI agents questioned accused Northwest Airlines bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab for just 50 minutes before deciding to grant him the right to remain silent and provide him with a court-appointed lawyer — a decision that led Abdulmutallab to stop talking and provide no more information.

The news came in an Associated Press reconstruction of Abdulmutallab’s first hours in custody. The AP reported that Abdulmutallab “repeatedly made incriminating statements” to U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents who originally took him into custody. Then Abdulmutallab made more statements to doctors who were treating him for burns and other injuries. Only later did FBI agents interview him — a session that lasted, according to the Associated Press, for “about 50 minutes.” Before beginning the questioning, the AP continues, “the FBI agents decided not to give him his Miranda warnings informing him of his right to remain silent” — apparently relying on an exception to Miranda that allows questioning about imminent threats.

After that, Abdulmutallab went into surgery. It was four hours before he was available for more questioning. By that time, the Justice Department in Washington had intervened. A new set of agents read Abdulmutallab the Miranda warning, telling him he had the right to remain silent — and thereafter, Abdulmutallab remained silent.

The article continues at the Examiner.

A video of a Fox News Channel interview with Byron York on this article is at Breitbart.tv

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