Bloomberg noted that his police department has major resources that can be marshaled, if needed, to assist federal officials.
“Keep in mind, a prisoner of the federal government will be in a federal detention center, will go to a federal courtroom through tunnels under the street, never seeing the light of day. So from a security point of view, there isn't that much extra much extra we want to do,” he said.
“Ray Kelly, our police commissioner, has an enormous number of resources at his command, and if the federal government asks for security help or if there are crowds outside the courthouse, we certainly know how to control that,” Bloomberg said.
The New York City police have 35,000 uniformed officers and 1,000 officers devoted to intelligence and counter-terrorism, he said.
The decision to bring Abu Ghaith, who is the late Osama Bin Laden’s son-in-law, to New York has drawn criticism from Republicans who say it’s a security risk, and say detention at Guantanamo, where suspects have fewer rights than the civilian court system, is preferable.
“At Guantanamo, he could be held as a detainee and fulsomely and continuously interrogated without having to overcome the objections of his civilian lawyers,” Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Friday.
Bloomberg declined to weigh in on detainee policy.
“In terms of whether this guy should be tried in federal court or interrogated in Guantanamo, I'll leave that to the president. He doesn't need me weighing in. He's got a tough enough job as it is,” Bloomberg said.