Addressing the Guantanamo “Legacy Problem”: Bringing Law-of-War Prolonged Military Detention & Criminal Prosecution into Closer Alignment

Abrams seeks to move the discussion on Guantanamo detainees forward by bringing law-of-war detention and criminal prosecution into closer alignment. The article analyzes the Obama Administration’s current approach of dealing with terrorists captured abroad and its preference for conducting criminal prosecutions whenever feasible. Abrams proposes several changes to the current system, including a decision-making framework for imposing further military detention after completion of the criminal process, which the administration has indicated is a possibility, and taking into account the criminal culpability of the detainee to impose a presumptive limit on indefinite detention, as ways to reform the two-track system and increase equality accordingly.

Author Profile

Norman Abrams
Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus, UCLA Law School

Abrams served as Acting Chancellor of UCLA in 2006-2007. Retiring from the Law School faculty in 2007 with the titles of Acting Chancellor Emeritus and Professor of Law Emeritus, he has been recalled and continues to teach and write in the areas of federal criminal law, anti-terrorism law and evidence. Abrams joined the faculty and has been a member of the UCLA family since 1959.

From 1991 to 2001, Abrams served as UCLA's vice chancellor of academic personnel, overseeing faculty appointments and promotions on the campus. He served as interim dean of the law school from 2003 to 2004, and earlier had served as associate dean, from 1989 to 1991.

The fifth edition of Abrams' groundbreaking casebook on federal criminal law, Federal Criminal Law and Its Enforcement (with Beale and Klein), was published in 2010. Another of his books, Anti-Terrorism and Criminal Enforcement, (3rd ed., 2008), is the first casebook to deal comprehensively with the rapidly evolving field of anti-terrorism law and the criminal enforcement process. He is also a co-author of Evidence: Cases and Materials, 9th ed. (with Weinstein, Mansfield, and Berger).
Share these ideas

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *