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Hamdan v. Rumsfeld

Law Dictionary

Law Dictionary

Featuring Black's Law Dictionary 2nd Ed.
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Constitutional Law Keyed to Sullivan

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Citation. 548 U.S. 577.

Brief Fact Summary.  Hamdan was charged with conspiracy to commit offences triable by a military commission and was granted Habeas Corpus to dispute this charge.

Synopsis of Rule of Law. Prisoners of war may not be tried in military commissions that do not afford the rights prescribed in the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and the Geneva Conventions

Facts. It is alleged that between the years of 1996 and 2001 Hamdan was engaged in actions in preparation of the September 11, 2001 attacks against the United States. Militia forces in Afghanistan that were fighting the Taliban captured Hamdan and turned him over to the U.S. Military in 2002. He was transferred to Guantanamo Bay. A United States occupied Military base. After a year of being detained without any charges being brought against him, President Bush declared that he had committed acts triable by a military commission. He was charged with one count of conspiracy to commit offenses triable by the commission. This commission is created by military necessity, not by statute or constitutional power. This commission has a presiding officer and at least three other members. The accused is afforded military counsel, and a copy of the charges against him. This hearing may be conducted outside the presence of the accused for the accused does not have a right to see all evidence or hear all witness statement against him for purposes of national security. After being tried and convicted of conspiracy, Hamdan apply for a writ of Habeas Corpus stating he deserved all the constitutional rights afforded to him at trial, the writ was granted.

Issue. Whether Hamdan committed a crime triable by military commissions and whether that commission is constitutional.

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