The Guantanamo trials of the 9/11 masterminds convened today, perhaps for the last time, since Barack Obama has said that he'll close the prison at Guantanamo Bay and move its tribunals into proper U.S. courts.
One teeny, tiny hitch: The trials may end abruptly for a different reason…
[T]he immediate question facing the Guantanamo judges was whether the defendants still faced any charges.
The Bush administration appointee overseeing the tribunals, Susan Crawford, quietly dropped charges in all the pending cases in December and refiled them in early January. It was a technical procedure aimed at updating jury pools that were assigned to the cases years ago.
Defense lawyers argued that the move had the effect of nullifying all the previous rulings in the ongoing cases, restarting the trial clock and requiring that the defendants be served with new copies of the charges and arraigned again.
Come on. There's got to be an easy way around that technicality.
I mean, they did away with habeas corpus pretty quick.
Tags: 9/11, Bill of Rights, Guantanamo Bay