Court Order Allows Government to Hold Prisoners Based on Secret Evidence « The Washington Independent
SCOTUSblog reports that the federal district court judge in Washington overseeing 113 habeas cases involving about 200 Guantanamo detainees caved to the government’s demands yesterday, significantly modifying his previous order requiring broad disclosure by the government to the detainees and their lawyers about the government’s legal and factual justification for holding the prisoners.
SCOTUSblog has the details, and the order itself. But the most significant change appears to be that the court allowed the government to withhold classified information from the detainees, even if that evidence is the basis for their being detained.
Vincent Warren, executive director of the Center for Constitutional Rights, told SCOTUSblog that the decision to withdraw the government’s duty to supply to detainees substitutes for secret data “will effectively prevent counsel, who cannot share classified information with their clients, from discussing evidence and preparing a response with their client’s assistance.” That change will allow the government to “continue to use secret evidence to hold prisoners.”