Comparison of Rights in Military Commission Trials and Trials in Federal Criminal Court [February 28, 2013] [open pdf - 385KB]
"The renewal of military commission proceedings against Khalid Sheik Mohammad and four others for their alleged involvement in the 9/11 terrorist attacks has focused renewed attention on the differences between trials in federal court and those conducted by military commission. The decision to try the defendants in military court required a reversal in policy by the Obama Administration, which had publicly announced in November 2009 its plans to transfer the five detainees from the U.S. Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, into the United States to stand trial in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for criminal offenses related to the 9/11 attacks. The Administration's plans to try these and possibly other Guantanamo detainees in federal court proved controversial, and Congress responded by enacting funding restrictions which effectively barred any non-citizen held at Guantanamo from being transferred into the United States. […] This report provides a brief summary of legal issues raised by the choice of forum for trying accused terrorists and a chart comparing selected military commissions rules under the Military Commissions Act, as amended, to the corresponding rules that apply in federal court."
CRS Report for Congress, R40932