Lawyers who represent those charged with terrorism-related offences say a well-functioning legal system needs people willing to argue the alleged perpetrator’s side in court — such as the lawyers readying to defend Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and alleged Via train attack plotter Raed Jaser.

"Thank goodness we have people who are willing to do this work," Tamar Birckhead told Day 6's Brent Bambury in a recent interview.

Birckhead represented Richard Reid in 2002. Reid pleaded guilty to trying to blow up a trans-Atlantic flight with explosives hidden in his shoes. Flight attendants and passengers foiled the attack by restraining Reid, who is now serving a life sentence at a maximum-security federal prison in Florence, Colo.

Birckhead and the other lawyers speaking with Bambury said their job is part of a well-functioning legal system.

For the full interview, which includes lawyers John Norris and Ronald Kuby, listen to the audio link above.