Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Supreme Court Sends ACLU Torture Photos Case Back to Appeals Court

ACLU Will Continue to Press for Photos' Release

WASHINGTON - November 30 - The U.S. Supreme Court today sent back to an appeals court a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union for the release of photos depicting the abuse of prisoners in U.S. custody overseas. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled in 2008 that the photos must be released to the public, but Congress recently enacted legislation that permits the Secretary of Defense to exempt the photos from FOIA. Defense Secretary Gates invoked that legislation earlier this month. The Supreme Court has now vacated the Second Circuit's original decision and ordered that it reconsider the case in light of the new legislation and Secretary Gates' certification.

"We continue to believe that the photos should be released, and we intend to press that case in the lower court," said Steven R. Shapiro, Legal Director of the ACLU. "No democracy has ever been made stronger by suppressing evidence of its own misconduct."

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