Indeed rejecting the Governments arguments that the Court should abstain from

Indeed rejecting the governments arguments that the

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Indeed, rejecting the Government’s arguments that the Court should abstain from hearing detainee claims on equitable grounds, the Court emphasized that, having been “denied meaningful access to a judicial forum for a period of years,” Guantánamo detainees are entitled to a “prompt habeas corpus hearing.” Id . at 2263, 2275. As the Government has conceded in a similar context, detainees like Petitioner who are facing military commission trials are “in exactly the same position as the detainees in Boumediene . . . insofar as [they] challenge[] [their] detention. The fact that [they are] also subject to trial by military commission does not distinguish [their] case[s] from those of the detainees in Boumediene .” Br. in Opp. to Cert., Hamdan v. Gates , No. 07-15, 2007 WL 2115682, at *11 (U.S. July 23, 2007). 11
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B. Habeas Corpus is Also an Appropriate Vehicle for Petitioner’s Challenge to Military Commission Jurisdiction It is equally well established that habeas corpus is an appropriate vehicle for contesting the personal jurisdiction of a military tribunal before trial. Habeas corpus has long been used to bring such challenges, including challenges (like this one) that dispute military commission jurisdiction based on juvenile status. Further, although the Supreme Court’s decision in Councilman , 420 U.S. 738, suggests that federal courts should sometimes abstain from deciding challenges that implicate ongoing military proceedings, that case itself makes plain that abstention is inappropriate where, as here, a petitioner brings a status-based challenge contending that a military commission lacks personal jurisdiction over a particular class of persons. See id . at 759. And insofar as Section 950j(b) of the MCA purports to strip this Court of jurisdiction to hear challenges to military commission jurisdiction, it amounts to an unconstitutional suspension of the writ of habeas corpus, because the alternate review procedures set forth in the MCA are an inadequate substitute for habeas review. Simply put, the Supreme Court has recognized the fundamental importance of permitting petitioners to bring status-based challenges to a military commission’s personal jurisdiction before such petitioners are subjected to the ordeal of a military commission trial, and the post-conviction review procedures set forth in the MCA cannot adequately replace such pre-trial habeas review. 1. Habeas Corpus is a Long-Established Mechanism for Challenging Military Commission Jurisdiction It is well-settled that habeas corpus is an appropriate mechanism for challenging the jurisdiction of military commissions before trial. Indeed, just two years ago, in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld , 548 U.S. 557, the Supreme Court reviewed a Guantánamo detainee’s pre-trial habeas challenge to the jurisdiction of the military commission then slated to try him. The detainee’s 12
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petition alleged that the commission lacked authority to try him for the alleged crime of “conspiracy.” Id . at 566. The Supreme Court agreed that the commission lacked the power to
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  • Summer '16
  • Ramon Wawire
  • Supreme Court of the United States, Habeas corpus, Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, Boumediene v. Bush, military commission

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