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Course Details

National Security Cases in Federal Court
#6711

Type

SEM

Credits

2 cr.

Senior Writing

Yes

Student Year

2L/3L

Description:

The objective of this two-credit seminar is to use case and statute readings, class discussions, and student presentations to give its participants a thorough grounding in the unique investigative and legal tools that are used in the investigation and trial of a criminal national security case (terrorism and espionage) in federal district court. After analyzing the main statutes in the field, such as material support to a foreign terrorist organization, topics covered will include the use of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act as an investigative tool; the extraterritorial application of U.S. criminal laws, and the legal structure applicable to U.S. law enforcement agents when they are working outside the United States; the procedures of the Classified Information Procedures Act that come into play when classified information may be relevant to a criminal case; and the choice between military commissions, law of armed conflict detention, and federal criminal trials for terrorism defendants. Class participation is important to a thorough examination of these issues. Students’ grades will be based one-third on class participation, and two-thirds on the writing of a paper. Topics for the paper/presentation can be of the students’ choosing (with the instructor’s approval), or can be selected from a list to be provided by the instructor. Papers of appropriate length that are submitted for this seminar may satisfy the third year writing requirement. The seminar’s enrollment is limited to sixteen students. Participants in the seminar must either have completed Criminal Procedure or commit to reading, before the first seminar session, a set of readings chosen by the instructor on the topics of search and seizure, the Fourth Amendment’s warrant clause and its exceptions, and the exclusionary rule.
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Sections

Spring 2014: National Security Cases in Federal Court

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  • Adjunct Professor John F Docherty

Type

SEM

Credits

2

Prerequisites

Criminal Procedure or readings chosen by the instructor

Senior Writing?

Yes

Student Year

2L/3L

Details:

The objective of this two credit seminar is to use structured readings, class discussions, and student presentations to give its participants a thorough grounding in the unique investigative and legal tools that are used in the investigation and trial of a criminal national security case in federal district court. After analyzing the main statutes in the field, such as material support to a foreign terrorist organization, topics covered will include the use of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act as an investigative tool; the extraterritorial application of U.S. criminal laws, and the legal structure applicable to U.S. law enforcement agents when they are working outside the United States; the challenges posed by the existence of classified information that may be relevant to a criminal case and whether the Classified Information Procedures Act adequately remedies those challenges; the choice between military commissions and federal criminal trials for terrorism defendants; and a critical examination of the various legal rationalizations that have been advanced for the detention of terrorism suspects. Class participation is important to a thorough and educational examination of these issues. Students’ grades will be based one-third on class participation, and two-thirds on the writing of a paper, approximately twenty pages long, and that paper’s presentation and defense to their fellow seminar participants. Topics for the paper/presentation can be of the students’ choosing (with the instructor’s approval), or can be selected from a list to be provided by the instructor. Participants in the seminar must either have completed Criminal Procedure or be willing to read, before the first seminar session, a set of readings chosen by the instructor on the topics of search and seizure, the Fourth Amendment’s warrant clause and its exceptions, and the exclusionary rule.

(no readings)