Judge blocks jail release for wife of Orlando nightclub gunman

The wife of the Orlando nightclub gunman has been ordered to remain in jail for the time being.

A federal judge issued the ruling in Florida, a day after a magistrate in California said Noor Salman could be released.

US District Judge Paul Byron, sitting in Orlando, made an order saying Salman should stay in jail while he decides if she should be detained or released pending her trial on charges that she helped her husband scout out potential targets and created a cover story for him.

A federal magistrate in Oakland, California, had ordered Salman's release as early as Friday, saying it was "debatable" whether the government had enough evidence to convict her.

US Magistrate Judge Donna Ryu also said Salman, 31, was not dangerous and there was no proof she had ties to the Islamic State group or held extremist views.

The criminal charges were filed in Florida, but the detention hearing was held in California because Salman was living in the Bay Area at the time she was taken into custody.

Salman has pleaded not guilty to charges of aiding and abetting, and obstruction of justice. She faces life in prison if she is convicted.

Salman's husband, Omar Mateen, pledged allegiance to IS during the attack at the Pulse gay nightclub on June 12.

Judge blocks jail release for wife of Orlando nightclub gunman

The deadliest mass shooting in recent US history left 49 people dead and dozens injured. Mateen was eventually killed by police.

In their motion asking that she be detained, prosecutors said there is a presumption in the law for Salman to be held in jail since the crime involves terrorism, and that prosecutors need not show anything more than an indictment to back up their request.

"Here, the defendant proffered evidence of her husband's alleged abuse, the affidavits of friends and family, and her lack of overall danger in support of an argument that she does not constitute a flight risk or danger to the community," the prosecutors said.

"Such proffered evidence falls far short of justifying a finding in favour of release, particularly in light of the nature of the charged offence."

Salman's lawyer Linda Moreno said the motion seemed to be a rehash of what was argued in the California court.

"The court found that the evidence they claim supports these allegations was debatable," Ms Moreno said. "It's far more than debatable. It's groundless."

- AP

More on this topic

Widow of Orlando nightclub gunman acquittedWidow of Orlando nightclub gunman acquitted

Pulse nightclub gunman's father 'was FBI informant for 11 years'Pulse nightclub gunman's father 'was FBI informant for 11 years'

Five killed in Orlando workplace shooting by 'disgruntled former employee'Five killed in Orlando workplace shooting by "disgruntled former employee"

Widow of gunman, who killed 49 in Orlando nightclub, charged with helping him in lead-up to attackWidow of gunman, who killed 49 in Orlando nightclub, charged with helping him in lead-up to attack

More in this Section

Brazilian leader suggests NGOs are setting Amazon firesBrazilian leader suggests NGOs are setting Amazon fires

Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn branded ‘cowards’ for dodging TV interviewsBoris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn branded ‘cowards’ for dodging TV interviews

Ancient skull suggests complex brain evolution in primatesAncient skull suggests complex brain evolution in primates

Putin says US missile test raises new threats to RussiaPutin says US missile test raises new threats to Russia


Lifestyle

Triathlete Carolyn Hayes is flat out. Since October 2018, she’s literally been racing around the world.On the treble: Triathlete Carolyn Hayes goes flat out to win a place in the Olympics

Children starting or going back to school is a reminder of how we all need an energy boost when sitting at a desk for hours, no matter what our age.Energy fix: Top 8 snacks for children

A sommelier shares her top tips.The dos and don’ts of serving wine – you just might have been doing it all wrong

It’s that time of year again; the long summer days are numbered, summer’s lease is all too short as she takes her last few breaths.Learning Points: Top tips on coping with back to school stress for you and the kids

More From The Irish Examiner