Muhammad Ali's Son Detained at Airport for Hours, Repeatedly Asked About his Religion
Muhammad Ali, Jr., son of the late boxing legend Muhammad Ali, was allegedly detained at a Florida airport and interrogated about his name and religion, according to the Miami New Times. He was flying with his mother, Ali's first wife Khalilah, from Jamaica to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport when immigration officers stopped him.
Khalilah Ali was not detained because she was able to produce a picture of herself and her late ex-husband. Junior was not so lucky, however, despite producing a United States passport, a clean record sheet, and all other identifying information. According to Chris Mancini, a family friend and former federal prosecutor, Ali, Jr. was the victim of overzealous enforcement of President Donald Trump's proposed travel ban that has been suspended by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals because the administration provided no evidence that anyone from the seven target countries has carried out terroristic acts in the U.S.
But Mancini, the former prosecutor, says immigration officers asked Ali Jr. for his full name, date of birth, and religion. They held him for 30 minutes, then separated him from his mother, and took him to a small room. An officer returned a half-hour later and again asked him his religion, Mancini says. He was held for about an hour more before being released.
Muhammad Ali famously converted to Islam and changed his name from Cassius Clay in 1964. Muhammad Ali, Jr. is a citizen of the United States.
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