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Court rules against detainee in habeas case

For the first time, an appeals court has reversed a lower court's ruling that a Guantanamo Bay detainee should be freed under the legal doctrine of habeas corpus.

The detainee, Mohammed Al-Adahi, is said to have done a stint at an al-Qaeda training camp and met with Osama bin Laden. After Adahi contested his confinement under habeas corpus, U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler sided with him, saying in an opinion in August 2009 that there was not enough evidence to hold the detainee.

On Tuesday, a federal appeals court disagreed. In a 3-0 decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals declared that the "district court clearly erred in its treatment of the evidence and in its view of the law."

"In all there can be no doubt that Al-Adahi was more likely than not part of al-Qaida," Judge A. Raymond Randolph wrote in the court's opinion. "We therefore reverse and remand with instructions to the district court to deny Al-Adahi's petition for a writ of habeus corpus."

Previously, federal appeals courts have affirmed rulings that denied habeas. In one case, a panel of judges reversed a denial.

Randolph was pointed in his views on the lower court's ruling. He wrote: "One of the oddest things about this case is that despite an extensive record and numerous factual disputes," the judge "never made any findings about whether Al-Adahi was generally a credible witness."

By Jason Ukman  | July 13, 2010; 2:38 PM ET
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If you look at Judge Randolph's rulings, you will see that he is a rubber stamp for Bush Administration Gitmo detention policies. It is obvious that Judge Randolph has no respect for basic human rights and will do whatever it takes to trump legal claims based on the Bill of Rights.

The Supreme Court -- yes, the John Roberts Supreme Court -- has overturned Judge Randolph's Gitmo-related rulings about half the time they were appealed. The fact that Randolph's ruling have only a 50% success rate when appealed to a Supreme Court as conservative as the John Roberts Court should tell you how extreme Randolph's views are.

Posted by: angelos_peter | July 13, 2010 5:48 PM | Report abuse

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