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The court effectively ruled that President Bush has the same right to indefinitely detain a civilian on American soil as he does an enemy soldier on a battlefield.
"This decision," countered Jonathan L. Hafetz, counsel for al-Marri, means the president can pick up any person in the country--citizen or legal resident--and lock them up for years without the most basic safeguard in the Constitution, the right to a criminal trial."
Originally posted by TheRedneck
I'm getting a 404 on the link. Has the story moved, or was there a typo?
Originally posted by LDragonFire
The phrase King George should have new meaning now.
President Bush has the legal power to order the indefinite military detentions of civilians captured in the United States, the federal appeals court in Richmond, Va., ruled on Tuesday in a fractured 5-to-4 decision.
But a second, overlapping 5-to-4 majority of the court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, ruled that Ali al-Marri, a citizen of Qatar now in military custody in Charleston, S.C., must be given an additional opportunity to challenge his detention in federal court there. An earlier court proceeding, in which the government had presented only a sworn statement from a defense intelligence official, was inadequate, the second majority ruled.
Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri filed a petition for a writ of habeas corpus challenging his military detention as an enemy combatant. After the district court denied all relief, al-Marri noted this appeal. A divided panel of this court reversed the judgment of the district court and ordered that al-Marri’s military detention cease. See Al-Marri v. Wright, 487 F.3d 160 (4th Cir. 2007).
Subsequently, this court vacated that judgment and considered the case en banc. The parties present two principal issues for our consid eration: (1) assuming the Government’s allegations about al-Marri are true, whether Congress has empowered the President to detain al-Marri as an enemy combatant; and (2) assuming Congress has empowered the President to detain al-Marri as an enemy combatant provided the Government’s allegations against him are true, whether al-Marri has been afforded sufficient process to challenge his designation as an enemy combatant.*
Having considered the briefs and arguments of the parties, the en banc court now holds: (1) by a 5 to 4 vote (Chief Judge Williams and Judges Wilkinson, Niemeyer, Traxler, and Duncan voting in the affirmative; Judges Michael, Motz, King, and Gregory voting in the negative), that, if the Government’s allegations about al-Marri are true, Congress has empowered the President to detain him as an enemy combatant; and (2) by a 5 to 4 vote (Judges Michael, Motz, Traxler, King, and Gregory voting in the affirmative; Chief Judge Williams and Judges Wilkinson, Niemeyer, and Duncan voting in the negative), that, assuming Congress has empowered the President to detain al-Marri as an enemy combatant provided the Government’s allegations against him are true, al-Marri has not been afforded sufficient process to challenge his designation as an enemy combatant.
Accordingly, the judgment of the district court is reversed and remanded for further proceedings consistent with the opinions that follow.
*We deny the Government’s motion to dismiss this case for lack of jurisdiction. The Government relied on section 7 of the Military Commissions Act (MCA) of 2006, Pub. L. No. 109-366, 120 Stat. 2600, which amended the Detainee Treatment Act (DTA) of 2005, Pub. L. No. 109-148, § 1005(e)(1), 119 Stat. 2680, 2741-42. After we heard en banc argument in this case, the Supreme Court declared section 7 of the MCA unconstitutional. See Boumediene v. Bush, 553 U.S. ___, ___, slip op. at 64 (June 12, 2008). The Government now concedes that we have jurisdiction over al-Marri’s habeas petition.