Feds Eye Colorado for Gitmo Transfers
State lawmakers don't want 'world's worst terrorists' in their backyard
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 3, 2015 8:57 AM CDT
Guard towers loom over the administrative maximum security federal prison called Supermax near Florence, Colo.    (The Pueblo Chieftain via AP)
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(Newser) – The Unabomber may be about to get some new neighbors. Department of Defense officials plan to visit Colorado to assess whether facilities including a medium-security prison adjacent to the ADX Florence "Supermax" prison could hold prisoners now at Guantanamo Bay, which the administration wants to close, the Denver Post reports. The Colorado facility already holds terrorists including the 9/11 "20th hijacker" Zacarias Moussaoui, but state lawmakers from both parties are strongly opposed to having Guantanamo inmates join them, the Post reports. "The people of Colorado do not want the world's worst terrorists housed in our own backyard," US Rep. Doug Lamborn, a Republican, said in a statement.

A Pentagon team investigating transfer possibilities has already visited Fort Leavenworth and a Navy brig in South Carolina, reports the Wall Street Journal, which notes that Congress will have to change the law before the inmates can be housed in a federal prison. Another potential site being eyed in Colorado is a vacant maximum-security prison about 10 miles away from Supermax that costs Colorado around $20 million a year, the Post reports. The facility has 948 cells but the Pentagon won't need that many: Around 50 of the 114 current detainees are already earmarked for transfer to other countries and federal authorities say they are looking into ways to transfer most of the others abroad. (Lawyers have been told they can no longer bring McDonald's to meetings with Guantanamo inmates.)