The trial of a Nigerian man accused of trying to blow up a US-bound airliner on Christmas Day 2009 is set to go full steam ahead next week as the jury was finally picked Thursday.
After three days of hearings in a Detroit court, a jury of nine women and three men with four alternates was chosen to try Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab.
Abdulmutallab, 24, has insisted on representing himself on charges of trying to detonate a bomb on a Detroit-bound Northwest Airlines flight with 300 people on board.
Judge Nancy Edmunds has repeatedly urged Abdulmutallab to let a lawyer argue his case, and appointed “standby counsel” to help him contest the charges.
While he accepted some help from lawyer Anthony Chambers, Abdulmutallab had insisted he would make his own opening statement on Tuesday when the trial gets fully underway.
However, court official Rod Hansen said Abdulmutallab had now told the judge he may change his plans. He has until late Friday to decide, ahead of what is expected to be a weeks-long trial.
Abdullmutallab, the son of a prominent Nigerian banker, had run into trouble at the start of jury selection on Tuesday when he shouted out “Anwar is alive,” in the courtroom in reference to Anwar Al-Awlaqi, the US-born cleric who was killed in a suspected US drone strike in Yemen last week.
And in another equally virulent outburst before the judge entered the courtroom, he said “the mujahedeen will wipe out the US, the cancer US.”
Edmunds also ordered him to change out of an oversized white T-shirt and into something “more appropriate” for the court.
The December 25 plot was foiled when explosives allegedly stitched into Abdulmutallab’s underwear failed to detonate and only caused a small fire, allowing passengers and crew members to restrain him.
The botched operation triggered global alarm and led the United States to adopt stringent new screening and security measures, including controversial pat-downs at airports and a massive expansion of the no-fly list.
Jurors will be shown a reproduction of the underwear that Abdulmutallab allegedly wore to hide the explosives and are expected to hear testimony from the plane’s passengers and crew.
Photo: Flickr user [email protected].
Protesters give Donald Trump a one-finger salute as Marine One flies over DC protests
President Donald Trump returned to Washington, DC on Saturday as large crowds of protesters fill the city's streets.
Trump had flown to Florida to see the launch of the SpaceX Starship and returned as the sun was going down.
BuzzFeed News reporter Ellie Hall captured a picture of Marine One approaching the White House -- and being welcomed back to town with raised middle fingers.
Trump, in Marine One, just did a flyover of the protest area outside the White House.
Trump announces he has unilaterally decided to let Putin back into the G7 Summit: report
President Donald Trump announced on Saturday that he intends to let Russia attend the next Group of Seven summit.
Since 2014, Russia's membership in the organization has been suspending in response to Vladimir Putin's annexation of Crimea. That changed the name from the G8 Summit to the G7 Summit.
The announcement came from pool reporter Gabby Orr of Politico, who said Trump will also invite South Korea, Australia and India to the next summit, which he is postponing until September.
More via pooler: “‘I don’t feel that as a G7 it properly represents what’s going on in the world. It’s a very outdated group of countries,’ he said. Alyssa Farah said this is bringing together our traditional allies to talk about how to deal with the future of China.”
Seattle mayor imposes emergency curfew — set to begin only 14 minutes after her announcement
The mayor of Seattle announced on Twitter that she would be signing an executive order imposing a curfew.
"I will soon be signing an emergency order and the city of Seattle will be imposing a 5 pm curfew soon," Durkin tweeted at 4:46 p.m. -- only 14 minutes before the order was set to go into effect.
"Crowds need to disburse from downtown immediately," she ordered.
"While many individuals gathered peaceful, some individuals have started fires and are destroying buildings. There are multiple fires downtown and it is an extremely dangerous situation. @Seattelfire (sic) does not have access to buildings," she continued.