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Category Archives: Guantanamo: Litigation: D.C. Circuit

Evidence of Absence: A Brief Reply to Peter Margulies on the al Bahlul Argument

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Thursday, October 23, 2014 at 9:55 AM

In light of both our prior exchange and my Just Security post from yesterday, I only have two new points to make in response to Peter Margulies’ post on yesterday’s D.C. Circuit oral argument in al Bahlul v. United States, which raises the question whether military commissions may constitutionally try offenses that are not recognized as international war crimes. As I . . .
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Government Files Response in Hatim v. Obama

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014 at 4:30 PM

Today the government filed a short response to the detainees’ petition for an en banc rehearing in Hatim v. Obama, the Guantanamo counsel-access case. Recall that last month the D.C. Circuit ordered the United States to respond to a joint motion filed by Saeed Mohammed Saleh Hatim, Abdurrahman al-Shubati and Fadel Hentif. The detainees are seeking review of a . . .
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Petitioner Files Reply in Bahlul v. United States

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 4:00 PM

Petitioner Ali al-Bahlul filed his reply brief yesterday in Bahlul v. United States, the D.C. Circuit case that will decide whether a military commission may render a stand-alone conspiracy conviction. In the new filing, petitioner makes a point of rejecting the government’s claim for plain error review before elaborating on the four arguments put forth in his opening brief. The argument . . .
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Confusing the Issues in al Bahlul

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 10:11 PM

For the two people still following the exchange between me and Peter Margulies over the bottom-side briefing in the al Bahlul D.C. Circuit military commission appeal, I wanted to offer a very quick (and hopefully final) word in response to Peter’s surreply from this afternoon, in an effort to crystallize the true points of departure between . . .
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Why Article III Matters: A Reply to Peter Margulies on al Bahlul

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 10:23 PM

I must confess that I don’t fully understand Peter Margulies’ response to my post from earlier today. My post argued that the bottom-side briefing in the D.C. Circuit in al Bahlul offers a relatively weak (and, in my view, already debunked) explanation for why Congess can allow allow military commissions to try enemy belligerents for wholly domestic offenses without . . .
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Article III and the Bottom-Side Briefing in al Bahlul

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Jane already flagged the merits brief filed by the U.S. government on September 17 in al Bahlul v. United States, the major challenge to the power of the Guantánamo military commissions to try non-international war crimes that was remanded by the en banc D.C. Circuit to the original three-judge panel back in July (and in which oral argument is . . .
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Government Files Response in Al Bahlul v. United States

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Thursday, September 18, 2014 at 6:57 AM

Last month Guantanamo detainee Ali al Bahlul filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in a bid to overturn his conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes, the single military commission conviction against Bahlul that the D.C. Circuit left standing in its July 14, 2014 en banc ruling (the court vacated his convictions for material support and . . .
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Appellees File for En Banc Rehearing in Hatim v. Obama

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Tuesday, September 16, 2014 at 10:00 AM

Yesterday petitioner-appellees Saeed Mohammed Saleh Hatim, Abdurrahman al-Shubati and Fadel Hentif filed a joint motion for en banc rehearing in Hatim v. Obama, the counsel access case. The detainees seek review of a three-judge D.C. Circuit panel’s August 1, 2014 decision upholding the constitutionality of security procedures instituted at Guantanamo in 2012 and 2013, including genital searches before and after detainees . . .
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Detainees File Petition for Rehearing En Banc in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014 at 8:58 AM

Yesterday, plaintiff-appellants in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld filed their petition for a rehearing en banc, two months after the D.C. Circuit affirmed the district court’s ruling that six detainees subjected to prolonged detention and alleged mistreatment at Guantanamo did not sufficiently allege that the officials who authorized and supervised their detention acted outside the scope of their . . .
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Article III and the al Bahlul Remand: The New, New NIMJ Amicus Brief

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Monday, August 18, 2014 at 12:59 PM

On July 14, the en banc D.C. Circuit ruled in al Bahlul v. United States that “plain error” review applied to Bahlul’s ex post facto challenge to his military commission convictions for conspiracy, material support, and solicitation–and then upheld the first of those charges under such deferential review (while throwing out the latter two). One of the potentially unintended consequences of the Court . . .
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Petitioner Files Opening Brief in Al Bahlul v. United States

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Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Petitioner Ali al Bahlul, the Yemeni detainee who served as Osama bin Laden’s personal assistant and public relations secretary, has just filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in an attempt to overturn his military commission conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes. In the filing, al Bahlul argues that he was tried for . . .
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David Remes on the Counsel Access Case

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Saturday, August 2, 2014 at 6:30 PM

David Remes, an attorney representing Guantanamo detainees–and, in particular, co-counsel for the petitioner in Hatim–writes in with this comment on Friday’s ruling in that case from the D.C. Circuit: The D.C. Circuit’s decision is disappointing, but in a sense it is anticlimactic. The government effectively won the case over a year ago, when the court stayed Judge . . .
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Bahlul: A Longer View

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at 6:46 AM

Steve says of yesterday’s Bahlul decision. Whether or not you agree with the result of today’s decision, the D.C. Circuit has done no one any favors–not the government, which will still be terribly uncertain as to which cases it can and can’t bring; not the defendants, for obvious reasons; not the public; and, most importantly, not the commissions–the fragility . . .
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Interesting New Habeas Argument in the D.C. Circuit

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Friday, July 11, 2014 at 7:18 AM

This case has been kicking around the district court for a while, but has now made it to the D.C. Circuit. Ahmed Adnan Ajam is basically arguing that the executive branch wants to release him and the transfer restrictions on its doing so represent an unconstitutional infringement of presidential power. He lost in the district court on . . .
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Allaithi v. Rumsfeld: D.C. Circuit Affirms

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Tuesday, June 10, 2014 at 2:06 PM

A three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit handed down its decision in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld today, affirming the district court’s ruling that six detainees subjected to prolonged detention and alleged mistreatment at Guantanamo did not sufficiently allege that the officials who authorized and supervised their detention acted outside the scope of their employment. At the outset, Judge Brown (also writing . . .
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Government Files Response to Al Janko’s Petition for Rehearing En Banc

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Tuesday, June 3, 2014 at 8:22 PM

Today the government filed its response opposing Abdul Rahim Abdul Razak al Janko’s petition for an en banc rehearing. Back in January, a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision that 28 U.S.C. § 2241(e)(2) bars the ex-detainee from bringing a damages action against U.S. officials for imprisoning him in Afghanistan and at Guantanamo. Al Janko’s March 31 . . .
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Abstention, Balancing the Equities, and Armed Conflict in Al-Nashiri: A Reply to Steve Vladeck and Kevin Jon Heller

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Wednesday, May 7, 2014 at 7:35 AM

There’s much common ground evident in Steve’s reply to my earlier post on the effort of Abd Al-Nashiri, the accused mastermind of the USS Cole bombing, to enjoin his military commission trial.  Steve and I agree that the central question is whether the federal district court should abstain from exercising jurisdiction. Moreover, Steve is clearly right that . . .
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Habeas and the Military Commissions After Aamer

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Friday, March 21, 2014 at 9:36 AM

I’ve already written at some length about the D.C. Circuit’s decision last month in Aamer v. Obama, in which a divided panel held that the Guantánamo detainees may challenge the conditions of their confinement through habeas petitions, notwithstanding the language of the jurisdiction-stripping provisions of the Military Commissions Act of 2006. As Judge Tatel explained, . . .
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Oral Argument Summary: Al Laithi v Rumsfeld

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Saturday, February 22, 2014 at 12:00 PM

The courtroom is nearly full at the DC Circuit Court of Appeals for oral arguments in Al Laithi v. Rumsfeld. It is full mostly with a large number of students—apparently both college and law-school-age students—who fill the four back-most rows. Al Laithi is a bit of a weird case for students to use as an entry point into the Guantanamo discussion: It . . .
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D.C. Circuit on Obaydullah: New Evidence Unhelpful to Detainee’s Case

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Friday, January 24, 2014 at 4:15 PM

The D.C. Circuit, in an exceedingly brief and quickly-issued per curiam judgment, has affirmed the district court’s denial of Obaydullah’s motion regarding newly-discovered evidence related to his habeas petition. Yours truly covered the oral arguments that took place in this Guantanamo habeas case only last week at the D.C. Circuit.  That was fast. Background: prior to the D.C. Circuit’s 2012 . . .
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