ACLU in Federal Court Today to Argue for CIA Contempt for Destroying Interrogation Tapes

January 16, 2008
10:25 AM

Rachel Myers, ACLU, (212) 549-2689 or 2666;

ACLU in Federal Court Today to Argue for CIA Contempt for Destroying Interrogation Tapes

NEW YORK - January 16 - The American Civil Liberties Union will be in federal court today to ask a federal judge to hold the CIA in contempt of court for destroying videotapes depicting the abusive interrogations of two detainees in its custody. The ACLU will also argue for the release of other government documents relating to the abuse of prisoners, including Office of Legal Counsel (OLC) memos authorizing the CIA and the Defense Department to use harsh interrogation methods, documents relating to the CIA Office of Inspector General investigations into prisoner abuse, and Defense Department videotapes believed to depict “Forced Cell Extraction” teams abusing Guantánamo prisoners.

Today’s hearing is part of a lawsuit brought in 2004 by the ACLU along with the Center for Constitutional Rights, Physicians for Human Rights, Veterans for Common Sense and Veterans for Peace to enforce its FOIA requests for records concerning the treatment of prisoners in U.S. custody.

Federal court hearing on the ACLU’s request that the court hold the CIA in contempt for destroying interrogation videotapes and order the release of documents related to a Freedom of Information Act request for records related to the treatment of detainees in U.S. custody

Amrit Singh and Alexa Kolbi-Molinas of the national ACLU and Melanca D. Clark of the New Jersey-based law firm Gibbons P.C. will argue in front of U.S. District Court Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein of the Southern District of New York. Other attorneys in the case are Jameel Jaffer and Judy Rabinovitz of the national ACLU; Arthur Eisenberg and Beth Haroules of the New York Civil Liberties Union; Lawrence S. Lustberg of Gibbons P.C.; and Shayana Kadidal and Michael Ratner of the Center for Constitutional Rights.

Today, January 16, 2008, 3:00 p.m. EST

United States District Court Southern District of New York Courtroom 14D 500 Pearl Street New York, NY 10007-1312

The ACLU’s motion asking the court to hold the CIA in contempt is available online

The ACLU's most recent memo requesting production of the outstanding OLC documents is available online

For more information on the ACLU’s FOIA requests, including press releases and legal briefs, go here