Majid Khan, the only legal U.S. resident held at Guantanamo, was born in Pakistan and moved with his family to the United States in 1996. They settled in Baltimore, Maryland and were granted asylum in 1998. After graduating from high school in 1999, Khan volunteered to teach computer classes at the Islamic Society of Baltimore.
While in Pakistan in 2002, Khan married Rabia Yaqoub and returned to the United States. Upon his return to Pakistan in 2003, Khan and several family members were arrested in Karachi by Pakistani authorities. Khan was believed to be an affiliate of Khalid Sheikh Muhammad, and allegedly worked as a courier for al Qaeda, provided information on potential terrorist attacks against the United States, and planned to assassinate Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf.
Approximately a month later, Khan’s family members were released and he was transferred to a U.S. black site. After three years of detention in unknown black site facilities, where he was allegedly tortured, Khan was transferred to Guantanamo as a “high-value detainee” in September 2006.
On September 29, 2006, the Center for Constitution Rights filed a petition for habeas corpus on Khan’s behalf, but the first Military Commissions Act—signed into law on October17, 2006—was an ex post facto law that suppressed Khan’s petition. Khan was denied access to an attorney until the 2009 Supreme Court decision in Boumediene v. Bush determined that detainees reserve the right to habeas corpus.
In 2007, Khan submitted a petition to the Washington, D.C. circuit’s Court of Appeals to consider his case under the 2005 Detainee Treatment Act. Khan alleges that during his time in CIA black site detention, he was subject to torture, which resulted in questionable and unreliable confessions. In 2009, however, the case was dismissed as a result of the Supreme Court’s ruling that allows cases of detention to be evaluated through habeas corpus procedure.
Khan was formally charged in Military Commission in February 2012 for five war crimes, including murder, attempted murder, conspiracy, spying, and providing material support for terrorism. These charges include alleged conversations with Khalid Sheikh Muhammad regarding plans to blow up gasoline tanks at gas stations across the United States, conspiring to assassinate Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, and delivering $50,000 to an al Qaeda affiliate that was later used to fund the bombing of a Marriott Hotel in Jakarta.
After pleading guilty on February 29, 2012, Khan faces sentencing, and up to 19 years in prison, not including the 10 years he has spent in various U.S. detention facilities.
In his testimony, Khan expressed remorse for his actions and affiliation with al Qaeda. He remains in Guantanamo and is set to face sentencing in 2016.
Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus (September 28, 2006) – PDF
Torture Motion (January 18, 2008) – PDF
2007 Detainee Treatment Act petition (August 14, 2007) – PDF
Detainee Treatment Act petition dismissal (April 4, 2009) – PDF
Khan Charge Sheet [DATE] – PDF
Khan Pretrial Agreement [DATE] – PDF