Arar v. Ashcroft: Video of Oral Argument Before Second CircuitDecember 11, 2008 # 11:00 pm # Human Rights # No Comment
With a Hat Tip to Bobby Chesney, the oral argument in Arar v. Ashcroft can be found here. As will be recalled–
Second Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral argument in Arar v. Ashcroft. All 12 appeals judges sat in an en banc session to hear the appeal to the 2 to 1 ruling in June 2008 by a Second Circuit three-judge panel that the federal courts lacked jurisdiction to hear Mr. Arar’s complaint. Maher Arar is challenging his rendition by the U.S. government to Syria, where he alleges he was tortured and released after one year without being charged.
Maher Arar, a Syrian-born, Canadian citizen was detained during a layover at the J.F.K. Airport in New York City in September 2002 on his way home to Canada. He was held in solitary confinement for nearly two weeks. At the time, the U.S. government thought he was a member of al-Qaeda and sent him to Syria, not Canada, the country of his citizenship. Mr. Arar’s suit charges that his Fifth Amendment due process rights were violated when he was confined without access to an attorney, both domestically and in Syria. He is seeking civil damages from a number of federal officials including former Attorney General John Ashcroft.