Court told it has no say over detainees
Oct. 20, 2006 at 7:20AM
The Bush administration has told the U.S. district court in Washington that it has no jurisdiction over hundreds of detainee cases at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
Acting on a bill, signed this week by U.S. President George Bush, that authorizes military trials of so-called enemy combatants, the Justice Department listed 196 cases that it says are covered by the law, The Washington Post said Friday.
The administration interprets the Military Commissions Act as stating that "no justice or judge" can consider treatment or imprisonment of anyone designated as an enemy combatant.
Lawyers representing detainees claim the law as unconstitutional, which likely will mean a third airing before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Legal scholars and some members of Congress, including Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter, R-Pa., said they believe the habeas provision of the new law is unconstitutional