CHICAGO (WLS) -- An accused terrorist is being kept in solitary confinement while his father is worried for his son's life and their lawyer is laying into the FBI for going too far in an investigation that landed him behind bars.
His name is Adel Daoud. He is now 21-years-old and he has been in solitary confinement at the Metro Correctional Center in downtown Chicago for more than three years, held on terrorism charges.
The Hillside man was arrested while still a teenager after FBI agents posing as terrorists discussed killing Americans and detonating a car bomb outside a bar in the Loop.
"He's suffered too much," says his father, Ahmed Daoud.
The highest security section of Chicago's MCC, called the Special Housing Unit or "SHU," is known as a jail within a jail.
Inside the SHU, prisoners considered high risk are locked up 22 to 24 hours a day, let out for exercise no more than five hours per week and given very limited contact with others, including infrequent non-contact family visits and tight restrictions on all other privileges.
"It's a very draconian punishment," says Thomas Durkin, Daoud's lawyer. "And it's very psychologically problematic to somebody that already has psychological issues. I think it's even more dangerous."
After court Monday, Durkin questioned the finding that Daoud is mentally fit to stand trial in January.
While Daoud's father questions whether his son will survive being kept in the SHU, solitary cells draw wide criticism from defense lawyers and human rights groups.
"Three years and three weeks now my son is locked up," Ahmed says. "I do not get it yet. I don't know when my son is gonna be out. I want my son back. My son, he do not do nothin' to be in jail three years and three weeks right now for no reason."
The government and the courts - for the most part - have fended off complaints about solitary confinement saying its used sparingly and with good reason.
Daoud's mental state has been on display during previous court hearings with several rambling outbursts. But at trial what may get the closest scrutiny is how the FBI first communicated with the teenager when one government operative posed as an imam in Saudi Arabia .