Khaid Sheikh Mohammad has been deemed to be the "mastermind" behind 9/11, and he and his co- defendants are currently on trial for their roles in the terrorist atrocity. On the first day of trial, all five alleged perpetrators refused to enter pleas.
The courtroom was full of unusual dysfunction during the nine hour hearing. Lawyers complained that they were not qualified to represent their clients; translators interrupted lawyers; defendants ignored the judge, and Mohammed did nothing but play with his recently red-dyed beard and flip through pages of the Qur'an.
One of the defendants suggested that Americans were going to attempt to kill him before the trial ended, another defendant spent minutes kneeling in prayer on the courtroom floor while a third defendant was restrained by security to his chair.
Mohammed is a 47-year-old Pakistani known as KSM within the American intelligence community. He is accused of planning and overseeing the execution of the Sept. 11 attacks, which resulted in 2,753 deaths. The four other men are said to have assisted Mohammed in some way. The five men are being charged with 2,976 counts of murder.
The men include:
—Walid bin Attash, 35, Yemeni, a key KSM aide
—Ramzi bin al-Shibh, 40, Yemeni, KSM's alleged go-between to the hijackers while they were in the United States
—Mustafa al-Hawsawi, 44, Saudi, an al Qaeda bookkeeper who was captured with KSM in Pakistan in 2003
A small number of the family members of 9/11 victims were present for the proceedings, being held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The institution is one of the most heavily controlled prisons in the world. Prisoners are usually in solitary confinement and under extreme security with almost all access to the outside world being prohibited.