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Garcia-Mir v. Meese
United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
788 F.3d 1446 (1986)
A group of Cuban refugees (plaintiffs) detained in the Atlanta Penitentiary, challenged the lawfulness of their detention. The detained refugees included individuals who had never been paroled because they were guilty of committing crimes prior to leaving Cuba and individuals who had previously been paroled because they were not guilty of any crimes but had had their parole revoked. The refugees claimed that their prolonged detention violated the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution and customary international law, which forbid prolonged arbitrary detention. The district court found that although there had been no legislative grant allowing United States Attorney General Edwin Meese (defendant) to detain those refugees who were initially paroled, Meese’s decision to indefinitely detain the refugees was nonetheless permissible as a controlling executive action despite violating international law. The matter was appealed on the ground that the detention violated principles of public international law and, in the alternative, only the president may violate public international law.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Johnson, J.)
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