Federal prosecutors on Thursday filed a motion to compel a Florida federal judge to stop the proposed release of Noor Salman, who is accused of helping her terrorist husband kill 49 people and wound 53 others at an Orlando nightclub previous year.
A judge ruled that Noor Salman (left) could be freed on $500,000 bond as early as Friday.
Magistrate Judge Donna Ryu cast doubt on the claims by federal prosecutors that the 31-year-old Salman is a flight risk or danger to public safety. "I find that the government has not established by clear and convincing evidence that Ms. Salman presents a danger to the community", Ryu said.
Her husband, Omar Mateen, carried out an attack on the Pulse nightclub killing 49 people previous year.
Federal Prosecutor Sara Sweeney said the couple ran up $25,000 in credit card debt and spent $5,000 in cash in the days before the shooting, including purchasing an $8,000 diamond ring for Salman. She has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
If released, Salman will live with her uncle in the San Francisco Bay Area and be required to wear an electronic monitoring device. They argue she should remain jailed pending her trial to assure she won't flee or endanger others.
Her lawyer, Charles Swift, sought Salman's release to her family, adding they would be willing to move to Florida, as prosecutors have said they want the case heard there.
Noor Salman was charged in January with obstructing justice and aiding her late husband, Omar Mateen, in his attempt to provide material support to a terrorist organization. According to the indictment, Salman also knowingly engaged in misleading conduct toward law enforcement "on or about June 12" with the intention to "hinder, delay and prevent communication" to federal law enforcement agencies information relating to the attack at Pulse night club. She faces life in prison if she is convicted.
The judge said Wednesday that prosecutors have provided no evidence.
Salman was arrested in California, where she'd been living with her young son. "This is extraordinarily rare and a real statement on the weakness on the prosecution's case", defense attorney Linda Morena said.