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News 06 Sep. 2011
Federal Courts, the Constitution, and the Rule of Non-Inquiry in International Extradition Proceedings, 76 Cornell Law Review 1198 (1991)
In a decision issued June 21, 2011, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has joined five other federal circuits in citing Jacques Semmelman's law review article titled Federal Courts, the Constitution, and the Rule of Non-Inquiry in International Extradition Proceedings, 76 Cornell L. Rev. 1198 (1991).
The case involved an accused member of al-Qaeda who was detained in Iraq by U.S. military personnel. The United States sought to transfer the petitioner to the custody of the Government of Iraq. The petitioner brought a habeas corpus petition, seeking to block the transfer on the ground that he was likely to be tortured by Iraqi officials. The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia denied the petition. On appeal, the D.C. Circuit affirmed. The Court of Appeals drew an analogy from the law of international extradition, and cited Mr. Semmelman's article on the 'rule of non-inquiry,' the doctrine that an individual facing extradition from the U.S. to another country cannot base a habeas corpus petition on the anticipated treatment he or she will face in the foreign country.
The case is Omar v. McHugh, 646 F.3d 13 (D.C. Cir. 2011).