Ali Charaf Damache (47), an Algerian with Irish citizenship, has begun to sue several Irish institutions claiming that he was not permitted to practice his Muslim religion while being held in a Cork prison in 2011.
The Irish Independent reports that Damache, who is wanted in the US on terror-related charges, has since been moved from Cork Prison to Cloverhill Prison in Dublin. He will remain there pending the outcome of the extradition request from the US.
Damache has since brought proceedings against the governor of Cork Prison, the Irish Prison Services, the Minister for Justice and the Attorney General. He claims he was subjected to abuse and insults from both staff and inmates at Cork Prison and was prevented from practicing his religion.
In his claims, Damache says his constitutional rights and rights under the European Convention to practice his religion freely were violated while he was held in Cork Prison. He is also seeking damages.
Damache says he was not provided with halal meat, nor water to wash with before praying, nor an Iman for Friday prayers. He also said he had to use chamber pots in the cells and the hygiene in the prison's toilet area was poor.
The action has been opposed by the State which denies his rights were breached. The action before Justice Elizabeth Dunne continues on Thursday.
Damache is famously connected to the ‘Jihad Jane’ case. The two reportedly conspired to kill Lars Vilks, the Swedish cartoonist whose 2007 portrayal of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, angered Muslims around the world.
Last year, Damache unexpectedly pled guilty to placing a menacing phone call to the Michigan-based attorney Majed Moughni. He was sentenced to four years in jail with the final year suspended. Due to time already served, Damache was released from custody.
However, upon being released, Damache was re-arrested in relation to extradition charges from the US in which he is accused of providing material support to terrorists. He is still being held in Cloverhill Prison in Dublin.
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