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Nigerian bombing suspect will stay his own lawyer

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab
US Marshals Office/EPA
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Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab

The man accused of trying to blow up a Northwest Airlines flight last Christmas says he’s sticking to his decision to represent himself in court.

Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab fired his court-appointed lawyer last month, and told Judge Nancy Edmunds he intends to defend himself in court against charges that he tried to set off explosives hidden in his underwear on a Detroit-bound airliner.

Abdulmutallab now has what’s called a stand-by attorney, who can help advise him through the court proceedings.

The young Nigerian told Judge Edmunds he preferred to keep that attorney, Anthony Chambers, from getting access to the evidence against him.

But Judge Edmunds overrode that request,  reminding Abdulmutallab that Chambers can only assist him if he has access to the discovery documents.

Abdulmutallab is charged with attempted murder, and attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction.

Another hearing is scheduled for January.   Judge Edmunds says she hopes to start the trial in the spring.