Woman Wins Lawsuit Against US Government Over No-Fly List

| by Dominic Kelly

A woman who was accidentally placed on the no-fly list in 2004 finally won her lawsuit against the government almost a decade later.

Rahinah Ibrahim filed a lawsuit against the government in 2006 after she was put on the no-fly list due to a clerical error. Officials refused to tell her why she was on the list, and after returning home to her native country of Malaysia, she was denied a visa.

The mother of four was, at the time, attending Stanford University for her doctorate degree on a student visa. A judge just said last month that an FBI agent was filling out a form for Ibrahim and accidentally checked the wrong boxes, thus causing her to land on the no-fly list and have her visa revoked.

Today, Ibrahim is still living in Malaysia and is a dean at the Universiti Putra Malaysia. For years, Ibrahim has been fighting the government in court, saying that her rights were infringed upon. With the discovery of the clerical error, a judge finally agreed and said that her due process rights were violated when she was denied an explanation for being on the list.

According to reports, Ibrahim’s case is the oldest of a few different lawsuits against the government’s no-fly list. Zahra Billoo, executive director of the California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, says that they receive many complaints every year about travel issues that Muslims face.

“Each year our offices hear from hundreds of individuals who are visited by the FBI and face related travel issues,” said Billoo, “Many have lost hope about clearing their names, but this case will renew our collective desire to continue forward with the courts on our side.”