"After almost six years in federal custody, former University of South Florida engineering professor Sami Al-Arian set foot outside prison Tuesday afternoon.
"As you can imagine, he is having a very cheerful reunion with his children," said his attorney Jonathan Turley.
Al-Arian, 50, had been held by immigration authorities pending his trial on contempt charges for refusing to testify before a federal grand jury in Virginia. A federal judge had ordered Al-Arian released on bail in mid July, but officials from Immigration and Customs Enforcement took him into custody.
The release of the former University of South Florida professor came as a surprise after ICE officials suddenly "elected to release Dr. Al-Arian" Tuesday, after a petition by his attorneys that his continued incarceration violated his constitutional rights......
For the time being, Al-Arian still faces trial on the contempt charge, but federal judge Leonie Brinkema ordered the criminal contempt trial postponed indefinitely so that the U.S. Supreme Court could consider the case........"