In re: People's Mojahedin Organization of Iran

680 F.3d 832 (2012)

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In re: People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran

United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
680 F.3d 832 (2012)

  • Written by Tammy Boggs, JD

Facts

Pursuant to the Antiterrorist and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (AEDPA), an entity was designated a foreign terrorist organization (FTO) by the United States secretary of state (secretary) (defendant) if the secretary made certain findings, such as that the entity engaged in terrorist activities, endangering the national security or American citizens. Once designated as an FTO, the FTO could have its assets frozen, or persons who provided support to the FTO could be criminally prosecuted. An entity designated as an FTO could petition the secretary for revocation. In 2003, the secretary designated the People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran (PMOI) (plaintiff) as an FTO. In July 2008, PMOI petitioned the secretary for revocation of the designation. Many circumstances regarding PMOI’s activities had changed since 2003. After reviewing a record containing both classified and unclassified information submitted by PMOI and the United States government, the secretary denied PMOI’s petition and published the denial in the Federal Register. The secretary gave PMOI a largely redacted 20-page summary of the secretary’s review of the record. PMOI petitioned for review of the secretary’s decision, arguing that PMOI was not properly accorded fair notice and an opportunity to respond, in violation of due-process requirements. The court of appeals agreed with PMOI and, in July 2010, remanded the case with instructions for the secretary to allow PMOI to review and rebut the unclassified portions of the record on which the secretary relied and for the secretary to make specified notations. Two years passed, and the secretary failed to comply with the court’s order. In February 2012, PMOI petitioned for a writ of mandamus, seeking an order requiring the secretary to act or setting aside the FTO designation.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Per curiam)

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