The first Guantanamo detainee to be tried in a civilian court was found guilty yesterday. The jury convicted him on one count related to the 1998 Embassy bombings in Africa. He faces twenty years to life. News of the verdict sparked increased debate about if, where, and how to prosecute Guantanamo detainees.

ABC quoted a senior administration official: “[Ghilani] was convicted by a jury of a count which carries a 20-year minimum sentence… He will very likely be sentenced to something closer to life… He will never be paroled (there is no parole in the federal system)… So, we tried a guy (who the Bush Admin tortured and then held at GTMO for 4-plus years with no end game whatsoever) in a federal court before a NY jury with full transparency and international legitimacy and — despite all of the legacy problems of the case (i.e., evidence getting thrown out because of Bush-Admin torture, etc,) we were STILL able to convict him and INCAPACITATE him for essentially the rest of his natural life, AND there was not one — not one — security problem associated with the trial.”

This conviction will certainly increase debate on what to do with the alleged 9/11 mastermind.

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