In re Terrorist Bombings of United States Embassies in East Africa (Fifth Amendment Challenges)

552 F.3d 177 (2008)

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In re Terrorist Bombings of United States Embassies in East Africa (Fifth Amendment Challenges)

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
552 F.3d 177 (2008)

  • Written by Alexander Hager-DeMyer, JD

Facts

Mohamed Al-Owhali and Mohamed Odeh (suspects) (defendants) were arrested for their involvement in the bombings of United States embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. Al-Owhali was detained by Kenyan law enforcement, and Odeh was held by Pakistani authorities. United States agents met with respective local law-enforcement agents to question both suspects. The agents provided both Al-Owhali and Odeh with Advice of Rights (AOR) forms, a common practice for United States law-enforcement agents operating overseas. The AOR forms included the following provisions: (1) the suspects had certain rights under United States law, (2) the suspects had the right to remain silent, (3) any statements could be used against the suspects in a court of law, (4) the suspects would have had the right to counsel in the United States, (5) the suspects had the right to stop answering any questions if they chose to start speaking with officers without a lawyer present, and (6) silence could not be used as evidence against the suspects in a United States court. During the interrogation, both suspects made incriminating statements to the agents and were tried in federal district court. The suspects’ motions to suppress these statements during trial were denied. The suspects were convicted and appealed to the Second Circuit. The suspects argued that their statements to authorities during the overseas interrogations should have been suppressed because the AOR forms did not satisfy the requirements of Miranda warnings and because the statements’ inclusion at trial violated the Fifth Amendment.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Cabranes, J.)

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