US not planning trials for al Qaeda detainees, Negroponte says
US not planning trials for al Qaeda detainees, Negroponte says

[JURIST] John Negroponte [official profile], director of US national intelligence, has said that the US has no immediate plans to put detained suspected senior al Qaeda members on trial. In a speech [prepared remarks] Thursday commemorating the first anniversary of the creation of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence [official website; JURIST report], Negroponte stressed the importance of intelligence provided by the detainees, saying that "At some point, it may prove desirable that they be brought to prosecution, to face justice. But that is something that I think will have to be decided in the future."

If the US does decide to try the detainees it could be under the system of military commissions [JURIST news archive] currently being challenged by Osama bin Laden's personal driver in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld [Duke Law backgrounder; merit briefs]. The US Supreme Court [official website] heard arguments in the case last month and most of the eight justices participating appeared skeptical [JURIST report] of the government's arguments in support of the tribunals. Reuters has more.