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Padilla lawyers ask for Supreme Court review of indefinite detention

[JURIST] Lawyers for "dirty bomb" suspect Jose Padilla [JURIST news archive] have asked the Supreme Court to rule on the constitutionality of Padilla's indefinite military detention. The Supreme Court considered Padilla's case last year, but dismissed the case on jurisdictional grounds [opinion, JURIST report], saying the lawsuit was improperly filed in New York. Padilla refiled his lawsuit [JURIST report] in South Carolina, and in February District Court Judge Henry Floyd granted Padilla habeas corpus [PDF ruling; JURIST report]. The Bush administration has appealed the ruling to the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, but Padilla's attorneys have now asked the Supreme Court to step in and hear the case beforehand. In Padilla's petition for writ of certiorari [PDF text, via How Appealing], his lawyers write that "Delay increases the chance that Padilla could be faced with an unconstitutionally coerced choice - for example, whether to plead guilty to a crime or to give up other rights in order to avoid further months of detention as an enemy combatant." AP has more. Human Rights First has a collection of case documents from the Padilla lawsuits.

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