Boston-Educated Scientist Stands Trial, Accused Of Aiding Al-Qaida

A Pakistani scientist educated at Brandeis University and MIT and accused of aiding al-Qaida appeared in federal court in New York on Monday as a judge sought to determine whether she is competent to stand trial.

Aafia Siddiqui, 37, was taken into custody about a year ago in Afghanistan, after she was found with suspicious items in her handbag and with notes that referred to attacks on such landmarks as the Empire State Building.

Authorities say while she was detained, she shot at FBI agents and U.S. military who were about to question her. No one was hit.

On Monday, Siddiqui repeatedly interrupted her competency hearing to declare her innocence and say she's not anti-American.

During the hearing, experts differed on whether she was faking her symptoms of mental illness or whether she genuinely suffers from psychological disorders.

Siddiqui's trial is set for October.

This program aired on July 6, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.


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