"There's a reason why we sign these treaties: to protect my son in the military," he said. "That's why we have these treaties. So when Americans are captured they are not tortured. That's the reason. In case anybody forgets it. That's the reason."
After Mr. Padilla's arrest in 2002 at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, John Ashcroft, who was then attorney general, said federal law-enforcement officials thwarted an al Qaeda plot involving Mr. Padilla to detonate a radioactive "dirty bomb" on U.S. soil and blow up several apartment buildings in major American cities.