Mike Hawash, a U.S. citizen, was held in a high-security federal prison without being charged
Free Mike Hawash
May 27: Trial delayed until Jan, 2004
(an update to this site will be provided soon)
Mike listed in "Portland Six" Complaint
Friends continue support
"Federal charge is 'Guilt by Association'"
On Thursday, March 20, 2003, our friend and colleague Maher (Mike) Hawash was "detained" as a "material witness" by the FBI in the parking lot of his Intel Corp's office. Soon after, FBI agents in bulletproof vests and carrying assault rifles awoke Mike's wife Lisa and their three terrified children in the home, which they proceeded to search. For over five weeks, Mike was held without charge in the Federal Prison at Sheridan, OR. All proceedings in his case during that time were secret.
On April 28, the day before Mike would have been ordered released, the U.S. Justice Department issued a Complaint, charging Mike with Conspiracy to Levy War on the United States. Mike is being targeted because he is a Muslim. The Justice Department has organized a smear campaign to portray him as a radical.
Mike will have a chance to defend himself, and tell his story, but not until January, 2004. Until then he is in custody, and his family is without him.
Mike Hawash, a U.S. citizen, was held in a high-security federal prison without being charged with any crime for five weeks after his initial arrest. Proceedings in his case during that time were then and are still secret.
Pressure placed on the U.S. Justice Department because of his lengthy material witness detention, including an order by Judge Robert Jones, led to the filing on April 28 of a Complaint by the Justice Department charging him with Conspiracy to Wage War on the United States. despite the fact that no new evidence against Mike had apparently been discovered during the weeks of his "material witness" detention.
Mike's attorney, Mr. Stephen Houze, has characterized the evidence in the Affidavit provided to be "sketchy" and "circumstantial". The evidence provided is substantially less detailed and conclusive than that against the alleged "Portland 6" co-conspirators.
Mike has been a U.S. citizen and resident for 14 years. He is an Arab-American. His wife Lisa was born and raised in Roseburg, OR, and stepchild and children were born and raised in Hillsboro, OR, where they live;
Mike has a job, a home, a family, and deep roots in his community. Historically, "material witness" arrests were solely for grand-jury or trial witnesses who were a "flight risk". The U.S. has held other Arab-American and Muslim men for as long as 15 months without charge as "material witnesses";
What You Can Do
Hawash Legal Defense Fund or
Hawash Family Support Fund
2459 SE TV Highway
Hillsboro, OR 97123
Or Any Bank of America Branch
Free Mike Hawash
c/o S. McGeady
2229 NE Thompson St.
Portland, OR 97212
Please help Mike by donating to the Legal Defense fund. Any amount is appreciated.
Paypal keeps records of donations.
For those who don't like PayPal, we're sorry, but it is most convenient for many.
(If you're wondering who S. McGeady is, and if this is legit, check here or here).
Any donations not needed will be returned. No donations to the Legal Defense Fund or to Free Mike Hawash will be used for anything other than Mike and Lisa's legal defense. Donations to the Family Support Fund will go only to Mike and Lisa's family needs. No donations will be used or are needed to support this site.
Tell your Friends! Encourage others who may not know Mike to think about what this means to them, their families, and their civil liberties. Here are instructions on how to join a mailing list for news about Mike's case.
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