Former Attorney General Michael Mukasey on Friday afternoon criticized the Justice Department for its decision to prosecute five terror suspects in federal district court in Manhattan, calling the move “unwise” and saying it risks creating sweeping new law that will affect routine criminal cases.

Mukasey, speaking at the Federalist Society annual conference in Washington on Friday, said the prosecution of terror suspects in civilian courts poses a significant challenge to the criminal justice system. Cases against Guantanamo Bay detainees, he said, were not investigated with the expectation that prosecution would happen in federal courts, with their stringent procedural and evidentiary rules.

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