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N.Y. Lawyer Stewart Convicted of Aiding Terrorism

"I'd like to think I would do it again," she said. "It's the way a lawyer is supposed to behave."

Stewart's co-defendants Ahmed Sattar, a postal worker who acted as a paralegal for Abdel-Rahman, and Mohammed Yousry, an Arabic translator, were also convicted. Sattar, charged with the conspiracy to kill people outside the United States, could be sentenced to life in prison.

The case attracted attention from U.S. lawyers, some of whom believed Stewart was the target of vindictive prosecutors who wanted to punish her for her leftist beliefs and others who said she willingly broke the law.

"It's unbelievable," said Ivan Fisher, a New York defense lawyer. He said she was "absolutely" a target of the Bush administration's anti-terrorism policies.

Jeff Fogel, legal director of the Center for Constitutional Rights, said, "There are some (lawyers) who will be scared and won't take these cases, but there are others who might be even more zealous to demonstrate that we won't be cowed."

Others, such as Northwestern University law professor Steven Lubet, said Stewart broke the law: "This case had nothing to do with zealous advocacy and everything to do with obeying the law."

U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said the convictions "send a clear, unmistakable message that this department will pursue both those who carry out acts of terrorism and those who assist them with their murderous goals."

During the trial, prosecutors said Stewart signed and then broke a deal with the U.S. Justice Department to prevent Abdel-Rahman from sending messages that could cause violence.

Evidence included a call Stewart made in 2000 to a Reuters correspondent in Egypt in which she read a statement issued by the cleric saying he had withdrawn his support for the Islamic Group's cease-fire in Egypt. The group had observed the cease-fire since a 1997 attack on tourists in Luxor.


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