Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, 30, has been known as the "Underwear Bomber" since Christmas Day 2009 when he attempted to blow up a plane headed from Amsterdam to Detroit with an explosive device sewed to his underwear. "Corrections officers have also defiled religious items in Mr. Abdulmutallab's cell, such as his prayer rug and Qu'ran".
The lawsuit argues the treatment violates Abdulmutallab's right to free speech and due process, stating that prison walls do not form "a barrier between an inmate and their rights under the U.S. Constitution".
Infamous Nigerian "underwear bomber" Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab has dragged the United States government to court for allegedly violating his constitutional rights by not allowing him communicate with the outside world, or practise his religion.
"This harassment has rendered it extremely hard for Mr. Abdulmutallab to manage the difficulties of the harsh conditions of solitary confinement by taking solace in his religion and religious practices", the lawsuit states.
He was alleged to have connections to al-Qaeda and Muslim cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, the Colorado State graduate who had called for the killing of Americans before he was likely killed in a drone strike in late 2011. He tried to detonate a bomb on a flight carrying more than 300 people, but his plan was foiled when passengers and crew members overcame him on December 25, 2009, as the plane flew over Woodhaven as it approached Metro Airport.
At one point, he was not allowed to communicate with his sister, he says.
The Bureau of Prisons did not comment on the allegations, but Abdulmutallab's defense attorney said the prison violated his rights.
Supermax does not have an imam on staff or under contract, according to the filing.
But he claims he was forced to eat non-Muslim food in an excessively painful manner, including once having a feeding tube inserted in his windpipe rather than his esophagus, which he says mimicked the sensation of drowning. He also is seeking removal from solitary confinement and a permanent injunction ordering Sessions remove the Special Administrative Measures and prohibit future attorneys general from re-imposing the measures.
Abdulmutallab also asserted the Justice Department went too far in restricting his communication, including not allowing him to talk to his nieces and nephews since his solitary confinement was based on a special administrative measures imposed on national security grounds.
"The restrictions imposed on our client are excessive and unnecessary, and therefore, we seek the intervention of the federal court", said Johnson. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit upheld his sentence and conviction in 2014.