Press Releases

CAIR Announces Filing Suit on Behalf of U.S. Citizen from Florida on Unconstitutional ‘No-Fly List’ Barred from Re-Entering Country

(JACKSONVILLE, FL, 1/25/2018) — On Thursday, January 25th, the Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Florida) and CAIR’s National Legal Defense Fund will file a lawsuit on behalf of Hashem Nader Sehwail, an American Muslim and U.S. citizen who was prevented from boarding a flight back to his home in the United States from Turkey.

CAIR’s lawsuit will be filed in the Middle District of Florida.

The lawsuit challenges the methods used to place law-abiding American citizens on the unconstitutional “no-fly list” and calls for injunctive and declaratory relief for Sehwail because he was denied re-entry due to his placement on the list.

SEE COMPLAINT HERE: Complaint for Injunctive And Declaratory Relief

“As a proud veteran of the United States Navy, and an American Muslim, I know that freedom of religion is a foundational ideal of our nation,” said Wilfredo Ruiz, CAIR-Florida’s communications director. “CAIR-Florida is committed to fighting against the biased unconstitutional placement of American Muslims on no-fly lists. No agency may deprive a United States citizen from returning to their homeland without a due process.”

Lena Masri, CAIR’s National Litigation Director and an attorney representing Sehweil, said: “This lawsuit challenges the U.S. government’s apparent policy of using the unconstitutional no-fly list as a tool to prevent innocent, law-abiding American Muslims from returning to their homes.”

“It’s a growing phenomenon and an urgent concern that American citizens, almost all of whom are upstanding, law-abiding American Muslims, are being denied entry into their own country without any means to address or challenge these denials. Mr. Sehwail was born in the United States and works in South Florida. He is now stuck abroad waiting to return home,” said Omar Saleh, one of Sehwail’s attorneys.

SEE: CAIR Welcomes Ruling that No-Fly List Appeals Process is Unconstitutional

CAIR and CAIR-Florida filed a similar lawsuit last year on behalf of another Florida Muslim, Zijad Bosnic, who was also prevented from boarding a flight back to his home in the United States from Bosnia.

SEE:  Jacksonville Man Files Federal Lawsuit Challenging National No-Fly List

CAIR-Florida is the state’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties of all people, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

La misión de CAIR-Florida es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.

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CAIR-Florida’s Communications Director, Wilfredo A. Ruiz,, 305.502.6749

CAIR-Florida Civil Rights Attorney Omar Saleh,, 954.272.0490, Ext. 140

CAIR National Litigation Director Lena Masri,, 248-390-9784

CAIR Senior Litigation Attorney Gadeir Abbas,, 720-251-0425


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