Calif. Judge Orders Force-Feeding of ISIS Suspect

He insists he's not on hunger strike
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 15, 2015 1:37 AM CST
A US Navy nurse stands next to a chair with restraints and force-feeding equipment during a tour of the detainee hospital at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

(Newser) – An alleged ISIS supporter in California whose weight has plummeted from 140 to 110 pounds since his arrest in May will be force-fed if he doesn't stop starving himself, a federal judge ruled on Monday. US District Judge David O. Carter said he was "deeply concerned" by the gaunt condition of 24-year-old Muhanad Badawi, who is awaiting trial on charges of assisting ISIS by buying a plane ticket for a fellow supporter, the Orange County Register reports. The judge said that Badawi—who ripped out an IV while hospitalized over the weekend—will be given the chance to voluntarily accept food before every force-feeding.

At a hearing last Thursday, Carter asked Badawi what his favorite foods were, then sent somebody to the store to buy the honey, peanut butter, tuna, bread, and bananas the suspect said he liked, ABC7 reports. At that hearing, Badawi said he wasn't on a hunger strike, but that he wanted to fast on Mondays and Thursdays for religious reasons. "You've got the wrong days and the wrong time," Carter told him, per the Register. "This is not Friday and this is not Ramadan." Badawi's lawyer said at Monday's hearing that her client's mental state has been going downhill after recent terror attacks, which have caused him to believe he has no chance of getting a fair trial, the Register reports. (Read more force feeding stories.)

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