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Arab activist on trial for immigration crime

November 4, 2014

DETROIT (AP) — Jury selection is beginning in the Detroit trial of an Arab-American activist who didn’t disclose her convictions for bombings that killed two people in Israel when she applied for U.S. citizenship.

Rasmieh Odeh likely faces deportation if convicted at a trial starting Tuesday in federal court. She’s associate director at Chicago’s Arab American Action Network.

There’s no dispute that Odeh answered “no” on immigration forms in 2004 when asked about convictions or imprisonment. She was imprisoned in Israel for 10 years for two bombings, including one in Jerusalem that killed two people in 1969.

Defense lawyers say Israel’s military tortured Odeh and she suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder when completing the forms. They say she also may have been confused, thinking the question referred to crimes in the U.S.

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