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Trial of Osama bin Laden relative to start Monday, judge says

This frame grab from the Saudi-owned television network

This frame grab from the Saudi-owned television network MBC (Middle East Broadcasting Center) shows Suleiman Abu Ghaith, the alleged spokesman of Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network, claiming responsibility for the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States in an undated videotape broadcast by the Dubai-based MBC on April 17, 2002. Credit: Getty Images / Middle East Broadcasting Center

A Manhattan federal judge Friday said the trial of Osama bin Laden son-in-law Suleiman Abu Ghaith will begin on schedule Monday and will not be delayed by his efforts to get testimony from Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

Abu Ghaith, who served as an al-Qaida spokesman after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks contends that Mohammed -- imprisoned at the Guantánamo Bay military prison -- can help clear him of charges that he knew about some terror plots in advance.

Defense lawyers told U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan that efforts to get written answers to their questions from Mohammed had been delayed because his lawyer objects to military prosecutors and intelligence agents seeing the answers.

Kaplan said he would consider a request for a deposition during the trial if the issues are ironed out. He also rejected a defense request for more information about a different terrorist who may also be named Suleiman Abu Ghaith before the start of trial.

Abu Ghaith, 47, is charged with plotting to kill Americans, but not with the Sept. 11 hijackings. The trial is scheduled to begin with jury selection on Monday morning.

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