International brief ~ UK police chief will not use Gitmo evidence against ex-detainees

[JURIST] In Wednesday's international brief, London Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir John Stevens [official profile] says that no prosecutions will proceed against the four Britons released from Guantanamo Bay [JURSIT HotTopic] based on material gathered by UK MI5 investigators who made trips to the detention facility. The four men were released from Guantanamo Bay [JURIST report] to British officials Tuesday. Upon their arrival at the Royal Air Force base Northolt in Middlesex, the four were arrested under the provisions of the Anti-Terrorism, Crime, and Security Act 2001 [official text]. Stevens said that his investigators would have to either obtain an admission from the four men, or uncover other evidence that could be used before the suspects would be prosecuted in Britain. Stevens was questioned about the emergency powers of the ATCSA and indicated that he was not in favor of extending the powers to allow police to detain terrorism suspects for longer than normally permitted. The Independent has local coverage.

In other international legal news ...

  • A UN Security Council-ordered report into killings in Sudan is being released Wednesday. The report will be reviewed by the Security Council and Secretary-General Kofi Annan before being made public sometime next week. The report focuses on killings in the Darfur region of Sudan [government website] and was intended to identify whether those met the legal definition of genocide, as spelled out by the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide [official text]. If the report indicates that genocide did occur, which has been the position of several countries, most notably the US under Secretary of State Colin Powell, the UN Security Council will need to meet to consider what, if any, action is required. JURIST's Paper Chase has continuing coverage [JURIST country archive] of Sudan. BBC News has more.

  • Italian politicians are expressing outrage and disbelief following the acquittal Tuesday of three men charged with international terrorist activities. The three were arrested after police obtained wire-tap conversations of them discussing the recruitment of suicide bombers to be deployed to Iraq. Presiding judge Clementina Forleo ruled that the men were guilty of immigration offenses, but that their plans could only be termed 'guerrilla activities' normal to a war. The prosecutor's office in Milan has indicated that it will appeal the decision, arguing that the judge misapplied the law as it was changed following September 11, 2001 by Premier Silvio Berlusconi to strengthen anti-terror provisions. Several government officials have warned that the ruling might create a belief that Italy is a safe country from which to plan terrorist activities. The International Herald Tribune has more.


 

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