Look who hates us for our freedoms:

A criminal court judge ordered the release of hundreds of Bush protesters Thursday, ruling that police held them illegally without charges for more than 40 hours. As the protesters began trickling out of jail, they spoke of being held without access to lawyers, initially in a holding cell that had oil and grease spread across the floor. Several dozen of those detained said that they had not taken part in protests. Police apparently swept up the CEO of a puppet theater as he and a friend walked out of the subway to celebrate his birthday. Two middle-age women who had been shopping at the Gap were handcuffed, and a young woman was arrested as she returned from her job at a New York publishing house. Hours before President Bush made his speech to the Republican National Convention, Manhattan Criminal Court Judge John Cataldo held city officials in contempt of court for failing to release more than 500 detained demonstrators by 5 p.m. The judge said that the detentions violated state law, and he threatened to impose a fine of $1,000 per day for each person kept in custody longer than 24 hours without being arraigned. As of Thursday evening, about 168 people still in detention had been held for more than 24 hours.

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