Author Topic: Supreme Court Denies Gitmo Detainee’s Request for CIA Subpoena  (Read 81 times)

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Supreme Court Denies Gitmo Detainee’s Request for CIA Subpoena

The Supreme Court on Thursday denied a Guantanamo Bay detainee's bid to subpoena two CIA contractors who allegedly interrogated him at a CIA black site in Poland.

The High Court sided with government officials who warned that Abu Zubaydah's inquiry would compromise U.S. intelligence relationships around the world. Justice Stephen Breyer delivered the Court's decision, which was 6-3. Justice Neil Gorsuch, joined by Justice Sonia Sotomayor, wrote a blistering dissent that accused the Court of shielding the government from "embarrassment for past misdeeds." Justice Elena Kagan wrote a solo dissent.

Thursday's case highlights the difficulties President Joe Biden faces as he purports to move the United States beyond the two-decade War on Terror. Top Biden officials are following their predecessors in withholding key details about Bush-era detention policies and shielding foreign intelligence partners. The president's Supreme Court nominee, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, may face questions about her advocacy on behalf of terror suspects at her confirmation hearings in March.

Zubaydah's lawyers sought subpoenas for testimony and documents about the contractors' activities at an alleged facility in Poland. They filed the request under a provision of federal law that allows for discovery "for use in a foreign proceeding," in this case a Polish investigation into CIA activities in that country. The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled for Zubaydah and said he could gather information as to the location of the overseas facility where he was held and the techniques used to interrogate him. The federal government appealed to the Supreme Court, saying the location of the site is a protected state secret.

The government must show a "reasonable danger" of harm to national security will result from the disclosure of protected information to prevail on a state secrets claim under the Supreme Court's precedents...........

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