Justice for All
A small-town Alabama lawyer might not be the first person you would think of to represent a foreign terror suspect who threatened to kill the president of the United States, but that’s exactly what Pell City attorney Lance Bell was asked to do. All indications are that he did it well.

An Uzbek man was arrested at a Leeds motel after federal agents learned of Ulugbek Kodirov’s intentions and his attempts to purchase a machine gun and four hand grenades. He was also in the country illegally, having arrived on a student visa, but failed to enroll in college.

Bell was told his client was a dangerous terrorist. Instead, he found him to be a young man struggling with English in a strange land who turned to the Internet out of loneliness, and believed lies about America he found on radical Jihadist websites.

While Kodirov was guilty of some very serious charges, Bell was able to explain what happened in a way that got his client half the sentence he could have received.

The case drew international attention, and Bell handled interviews from across the globe.

It’s quite a case for any attorney to handle, and the fact that it happened in Alabama holds a certain irony. Our state has been roundly criticized for its laws attempting to crack down on illegal immigration, and the federal government has attempted to get those laws nullified. And yet it’s the same state where an illegal alien was caught planning to kill our president.

Bell’s professionalism and concern for his client may not get much notice in that regard, and that’s OK. The main things are that no one was harmed and justice was served — thanks in large part to a small-town Alabama lawyer.

© 2012