Enemy Combatant Detainees: 'Habeas Corpus' Challenges in Federal Court [Updated October 4, 2006]   [open pdf - 155KB]

From the Summary: "After the U.S. Supreme Court held that U.S. courts have jurisdiction pursuant to 28 U.S.C. [United States Code] § 2241 to hear legal challenges on behalf of persons detained at the U.S. Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in connection with the war against terrorism ('Rasul v. Bush'), the Pentagon established administrative hearings, called 'Combatant Status Review Tribunals' (CSRTs), to allow the detainees to contest their status as enemy combatants, and informed them of their right to pursue relief in federal court by seeking a writ of 'habeas corpus.' Lawyers subsequently filed dozens of petitions on behalf of the detainees in the District Court for the District of Columbia, where judges have reached inconsistent conclusions as to whether the detainees have any enforceable rights to challenge their treatment and detention. […] Implementation of the DTA [Detainee Treatment Act of 2005], as amended, to preclude the detainees' access to court may raise constitutional issues with respect to the Suspension Clause (U.S. Const. Art. 1, § 9, cl. 2), whether it amounts to an impermissible 'court-stripping' measure to deprive the Supreme Court of jurisdiction over matters of law entrusted to it by the Constitution, and whether such constitutionally sensitive issues can be avoided in light of the alternative procedures provided. This report will be updated as events warrant."

Report Number:
CRS Report for Congress, RL33180
Public Domain
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