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Sunday, January 10, 2010

ACLU files suit against Library of Congress on behalf of ex-Guantanamo prosecutor
Jay Carmella at 1:37 PM ET

[JURIST] The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) [advocacy website] filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF; press release] on Friday against the Library of Congress [official website] on behalf Col. Morris Davis [official profile, PDF], the former chief prosecutor for the Guantanamo Bay military commissions [JURIST news archive]. Davis, who was employed at Library's Congressional Research Service (CRS) [official website], resigned as the military commissions' chief prosecutor in October 2007. Following his recognition, Davis became an outspoken critic of the commissions, including writing articles, giving speeches, and testifying before Congress that the system is fundamentally flawed. In the lawsuit, the ACLU alleges that Davis was terminated due to opinion pieces about the commissions. The ACLU believes that the discharge violates Davis's rights of free speech and due process. The complaint says:

Col. Davis now brings this Complaint for violation of his First and Fifth Amendment rights, seeking declaratory and injunctive relief, including reinstatement to his Assistant Director position, and damages.

The ACLU sent a letter to the Library of Congress in December seeking the reinstatement of Davis. The Library denied the request.

In October 2007, Davis said [JURIST report] that he was pressured to use classified evidence against defendants. He claimed that the push to use classified evidence stemmed from certain military officials' desire to keep the trials closed. This issue played a role in his resignation [JURIST report] earlier in October 2007. Davis complained that the officer who served as legal adviser should not have been supervising his work.

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