Imprisoned Sheik Hospitalized After Blood Sugar Level Climbs

From Reuters

Radical sheik Omar Abdul Rahman, who is being held in an Upstate New York prison on immigration charges, was admitted to a hospital Tuesday after his blood sugar level rose to abnormal levels, his lawyer said.

The 55-year-old blind cleric, who suffers from diabetes, was detained Friday after a 23-hour standoff with the FBI and the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

"His blood sugar level is higher than normal, and he has been put in the prison hospital to get his blood sugar level monitored," said attorney Michael Warren, who visited the cleric in the prison hospital at the Federal Correctional Institution at Otisville, N.Y.

The cleric's associates say Abdul Rahman also has a heart condition, suffers from asthma and requires insulin injections three times a day.

Warren complained of Abdul Rahman's treatment, saying: "The sheik told me he is being fed canned food, which violates his health and is against his religious beliefs."

A prison spokesman said it was Abdul Rahman's choice to eat canned food.

Federal prosecutors say secret audiotapes made by an FBI informant link the sheik to the World Trade Center bombing and an alleged conspiracy to blow up key federal buildings and commuter tunnels in Manhattan last month.

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