(WASHINGTON, D.C., 3/1/05) – A prominent national Islamic civil rights and
advocacy group today applauded the prison sentence given to a Texas man who
torched several Muslim-owned businesses in San Antonio during 2003 and 2004.
Thomas Carroll, 33, received a 30-year sentence that was enhanced by Texas
hate crime legislation. When handing down the sentence, Judge Phil Kazen
entered findings that Carroll committed the offenses because of his bias
against a group identified by national origin and ancestry. (In 2002,
Carroll was arrested for ramming his Toyota Land Cruiser into a
Muslim-owned gas station.)
“Terrorists commit crimes based on hatred of a people or a religion and
such acts will not be tolerated and will be dealt with firmly,” said Bexar
County District Attorney Susan D. Reed.
SEE: MAN SENTENCED IN HATE CRIME ARSON CASES
“The stiff sentence handed down in this case sends a positive message to
the American Muslim community that bias-motivated attacks will be
prosecuted with vigor,” said CAIR-San Antonio Chairwoman Sarwat Husain.
Husain also thanked all those involved in the investigation and prosecution
of the case for their professionalism and dedication to the pursuit of justice.
In April of last year, CAIR-San Antonio held a “community solidarity” news
conference in reaction to the arson attacks. Participants in the news
conference included local elected officials and representatives from a
number of civil liberties organizations, minority groups and law
CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 31 offices and
chapters nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance understanding
of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American
Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
To read CAIR’s Mission, Vision Statement and Core Principles, go to:
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