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Feds can’t pursue female genital mutilation appeal based on weak law

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. If this was largely a Christian (or non-Muslim) practice, it would be a great crime and laws against would be in place. But it isn’t. But it isn’t. Democrats have consistently stood in the way of meaning vaginal cutting legislation – siding with its defenders that it is “religious freedom.” The female genital mutilation charges against two Michigan doctors and six others were officially dismissed back in November, just as the defendants had requested, arguing the FGM law is unconstitutional. A federal judge agreed and dismissed the charges, delivering a fatal blow to the case

Angered by the ruling, I received this at the time of the Judge’s ruling from a a reader at the time of the dismissal:

I have appeared before Judge Friedman and can attest that he is a very learned and thoughtful in all of his rulings. This ruling has nothing to do with female mutilation but with the fact that Congress attempted to expand the commerce clause of the constitution beyond legal federal established precedent. I am certain that Judge Friedman is as appalled as you and I at the mutilation of these young women. These monsters masquerading as physicians should be permanently banned from the practice of medicine, and the people of Michigan and all other states need to pass laws preventing this form of mutilation with the strictest penalties for violation. Judge Friedman cannot be blamed for bad, unconstitutional laws and the ineptitude of legislators in not properly drafting laws.

“Although the department has determined not to appeal the district court’s decision, it recognizes the severity of the charged conduct, its lifelong impact on victims, and the importance of a federal prohibition on FGM committed on minors,” Solicitor General Noel Francisco wrote in a letter to Congress on Wednesday.

The decision comes six months after U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman dismissed the most serious charges.  Friedman ruled the law is unconstitutional and concluded Congress had no authority to enact a law criminalizing female genital mutilation.

“There is nothing commercial or economic about FGM,” Friedman wrote in a 28-page opinion. (Female genital mutilation) is not part of a larger market and it has no demonstrated effect on interstate commerce. The Commerce Clause does not permit Congress to regulate a crime of this nature.”

Despite having found three more female genital mutilation victims,  elementary school girls from Illinois, who were brought to Michigan by their mothers for the procedure by these Muslim doctors — all of them elementary school girls, the case was

Backi n January, U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman. Friedman dismissed the most serious federal charges against two doctors who perform a ritual known as female genital mutilation (FGM). U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman had ruled that Dr. Jumana Nagarwala and Dr. Fakhruddin Attar didn’t commit conspiracy to transport a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity. Two of the girls Nagarwala is accused of cutting at Attar’s clinic were from Minnesota.

“Transport a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity.” Why so twisted a charge? Isn’t vaginal mutilation enough? And what happened to the FGM investigation that spread to 5 states?

The trio tried to obstruct the investigation by telling other people to make false statement to authorities. The doctors are also accused of lying to investigators.

Federal prosecutors have indicted two doctors and six Detroit area members of the Muslim community for subjecting young girls to female genital mutilation (FGM) procedures. They are charged with 9 counts of conspiring, committing, and concealing acts of FGM, which is illegal in the U.S. (per 18 U.S. Code § 116). Preliminary physical findings made public from genital examinations of two of the child victims revealed,

[#1] “labia minora altered, or removed; clitoral hood abnormal in appearance; scar tissue and small lacerations”

[#2] “clitoral hood has a small incision; small tear to labia minora”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Sara Woodward has disclosed that defendant Dr. Jumana Nagarwala may have performed some 100 FGM procedures on young girls, so it is shocking that U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman would drop any of charges in this horrible case.

Friedman ruled  that Dr. Jumana Nagarwala and Dr. Fakhruddin Attar didn’t commit conspiracy to transport a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity. “The facts alleged in the indictment do not support this charge because, as a matter of law, FGM, while a prohibited criminal act, is not `criminal sexual activity.”‘ The clitoris is the female sexual organ – the source of human female sexual pleasure. This is sexual crime.

  •  The number of women and girls at risk for female genital mutilation (FGM) in the United States has more than doubled in the past 10 years. More than half a million women and girls in the U.S. are at risk of undergoing FGM in the U.S. or abroad, or have already undergone the procedure, including 166,173 under the age of 18, according to the Population Reference Bureau (PRB).
  • Dissemblers and deceivers claim that FGM is cultural phenomenon, not religious. FGM is an Islamic cultural phenomenon. FGM is found only within and adjacent to Muslim communities. (source: Gerry Mackie, “Ending Footbinding and Infibulation: A Convention Account,” American Sociological Review).
  • Unlike male circumcision, female genital mutilation has no health benefits for girls and women.
  • Female genital mutilation (FGM) involves partial or total removal of the clitoris, causing injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons.
  • Female genital mutilation procedure has no health benefits for girls and women. It removes all possibility of sexual pleasure. It is the worst kind of misogyny.
  • Procedures can cause severe bleeding and problems urinating, and later cysts, infections, as well as complications in childbirth and increased risk of newborn deaths.
  •  More than 200 million girls and women alive today have been cut in 30 countries in Africa, the Middle East and Asia, where FGM is concentrated
  • FGM is mostly carried out on young girls between infancy and age 15.
  • FGM is a violation of the human rights of girls and women.

Feds abandon female genital mutilation appeal

By: Robert Snell, The Detroit News, April 12, 2019 |

Detroit — Federal prosecutors will not appeal a judge’s order dismissing female genital mutilation charges in the first criminal case of its kind nationwide, concluding the law is weak and needs to be rewritten.

The decision delivers a setback to international human-rights groups opposed to female genital mutilation that have closely followed a case that has raised awareness in the U.S. of a controversial procedure and prompted Michigan to enact new state laws criminalizing the procedure.

“Although the department has determined not to appeal the district court’s decision, it recognizes the severity of the charged conduct, its lifelong impact on victims, and the importance of a federal prohibition on FGM committed on minors,” Solicitor General Noel Francisco wrote in a letter to Congress on Wednesday.

The decision comes six months after U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman delivered a significant, but not fatal, blow to a novel criminal prosecution involving a team of Metro Detroit doctors accused of mutilating the genitalia of nine girls at a Livonia clinic since 2015.

Friedman concluded the law is unconstitutional and concluded Congress had no authority to enact a law criminalizing female genital mutilation.

“There is nothing commercial or economic about FGM,” Friedman wrote in a 28-page opinion. (Female genital mutilation) is not part of a larger market and it has no demonstrated effect on interstate commerce. The Commerce Clause does not permit Congress to regulate a crime of this nature.”

The Justice Department has submitted a legislative proposal to Congress that would, among other things, amend the federal law and make it a crime when a defendant or victim crosses state lines to undergo the procedure.
FBI agents leave the office of Dr. Fakhruddin Attar, Burhani Clinic this morning after completing a search for documents in the on going investigation of Jumana Nagarwala of Northville who is charged with female genital mutilation of two 7 year old girls. Livonia, Mi. April 21, 2017.Buy Photo

FBI agents leave the office of Dr. Fakhruddin Attar, Burhani Clinic this morning after completing a search for documents in the on going investigation of Jumana Nagarwala of Northville who is charged with female genital mutilation of two 7 year old girls. Livonia, Mi. April 21, 2017. (Photo: Clarence Tabb Jr., The Detroit News)

The case emerged in April 2017 when Dr. Jumana Nagarwala of Northville was arrested and accused of heading a conspiracy that lasted 12 years, involved seven other people and led to mutilating the genitalia of girls as part of a religious procedure practiced by some members of the Dawoodi Bohra, a Muslim sect from India that has a small community in Metro Detroit.

Prosecutors say the girls — four from Michigan, two from Minnesota and three from Illinois — underwent female genital mutilation, but defense lawyers say the procedure performed on the girls was benign and not female genital mutilation. They have accused the government of overreaching.

Prosecutors have alleged that two girls’ clitorises were completely removed, but the evidence of female genital mutilation involving all of the girls is lacking, Nagarwala lawyer Shannon Smith said.

“The defense is pleased to see the Justice Department has reached the same conclusion as Judge Friedman, however, the case will still be heading to trial on the remaining charges,” Smith wrote in a text message to The News on Friday. “At trial the defense is confident a jury will agree that there was no female genital mutilation in this case and see that the prosecution relied on an unreliable medical expert in pursuing this case.”

Women’s rights groups decried the judge’s opinion, calling it a setback for women and girls.

“It’s a giant step backward in the protection of women’s and girls’ rights,” said Shelby Quast, the Americas director of equality for the rights organization Equality Now. “Especially when there is a global movement to eliminate this practice.”

The Justice Department’s decision not to pursue and appeal drew an outcry on social media Thursday, including reaction from Hillary Clinton.

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